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Journal of Applied Genetics 51(4), 2010, pp. 509-514

Family-based association analysis of the MAPT gene in Parkinson disease

K.S. Wang, J.E. Mullersman, X.F. Liu

Abstract: The MAPT gene has been shown to be associated with several neurodegenerative disorders, including forms of parkinsonism and Parkinson disease (PD), but the results reveal population differences. We investigated the association of 10 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the region of MAPT on chromosome 17q21 with PD and age at onset, by using 443 discordant sib pairs in PD from a public dataset (Mayo-Perlegen LEAPS Collaboration). Association with PD was assessed by the FBAT using generalized estimating equations (FBAT-GEE), while the association with age at onset as a quantitative trait was evaluated using the FBAT-logrank statistic. Five SNPs were significantly associated with PD (P < 0.05) in an additive model, and 9 SNPs were associated with PD (P < 0.05) in dominant and recessive models. Interestingly, 8 PD-associated SNPs were also associated with age at onset of PD (P < 0.05) in dominant and recessive models. The SNP most significantly associated with PD and age at onset was rs17649641 (P = 0.015 and 0.021, respectively). Two-SNP haplotypes inferred from rs17563965 and rs17649641 also showed association with PD (P = 0.018) and age at onset (P = 0.026). These results provide further support for the role of MAPT in development of PD.

Key words: age at onset, association, family-based design, haplotype, MAPT gene, Parkinson disease.

Correspondence: K.S. Wang, Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology, College of Public Health, East Tennessee State University, PO Box 70259, Lamb Hall, Johnson City, TN 37614-1700, USA; e-mail:

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