Filaggrin (FLG) loss-of-function (LOF) variants are a major risk factor for the common inflammatory skin disease, atopic dermatitis (AD) and are often population-specific. African-American (AA) children are disproportionately affected with AD, often later developing asthma and/or allergic rhinitis and comprise an atopy health disparity group for which the role of FLG LOF is not well known. Discovery of FLG LOF using exome sequencing is challenging given the known difficulties for accurate short-read alignment to FLG's high homology repeat variation. Here, we employed an array-based sequencing approach to tile across each FLG repeat and discover FLG LOF in a well-characterized cohort of AA children with moderate-to-severe AD. Five FLG LOF were identified in 23% of our cohort. Two novel FLG LOF singletons, c.488delG and p.S3101*, were discovered as well as p.R501*, p.R826* and p.S3316* previously reported for AD. p.S3316* (rs149484917) is likely an African ancestral FLG LOF, reported in African individuals in ExAC (Exome Aggregation Consortium), Exome Variant Server (ESP), and 4 African 1000G population databases (ESN, MSL, ASW, and ACB). The proportion of FLG LOF (11.5%) among the total FLG alleles in our cohort was significantly higher in comparisons with FLG LOF reported for African individuals in ExAC (2.5%; P = 4.3 × 10−4) and ESP (1.7%; P = 3.5 × 10−5) suggesting a disease-enrichment effect for FLG LOF. Our results demonstrate the utility of array-based sequencing in discovering FLG LOF, including novel and population-specific, which are of higher prevalence in our AA severe AD group than previously reported.
- atopic dermatitis
- health disparity