GWAS of 126,559 Individuals Identifies Genetic Variants Associated with Educational Attainment

The LifeLines Cohort Study, Cornelius A Rietveld, Sarah E Medland, Jaime Derringer, Jian Yang, Tõnu Esko, Nicolas W Martin, Harm-Jan Westra, Konstantin Shakhbazov, Abdel Abdellaoui, Arpana Agrawal, Eva Albrecht, Behrooz Z Alizadeh, Najaf Amin, John Barnard, Sebastian E Baumeister, Kelly S Benke, Lawrence F Bielak, Jeffrey A Boatman, Patricia A BoyleGail Davies, Christiaan de Leeuw, Niina Eklund, Daniel S Evans, Rudolf Ferhmann, Krista Fischer, Christian Gieger, Håkon K Gjessing, Sara Hägg, Jennifer R Harris, Caroline Hayward, Christina Holzapfel, Carla A Ibrahim-Verbaas, Erik Ingelsson, Bo Jacobsson, Peter Joshi, Astanand Jugessur, Marika Kaakinen, Stavroula Kanoni, Juha Karjalainen, Ivana Kolcic, Veronique Vitart, Harry Campbell, Ian J Deary, Nicholas D Hastie, David C Liewald, Igor Rudan, John M Starr, James F Wilson, Alan F Wright, Peter M Visscher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

A genome-wide association study of educational attainment was conducted in a discovery sample of 101,069 individuals and a replication sample of 25,490. Three independent SNPs are genome-wide significant (rs9320913, rs11584700, rs4851266), and all three replicate. Estimated effects sizes are small (R(2) ≈ 0.02%), approximately 1 month of schooling per allele. A linear polygenic score from all measured SNPs accounts for ≈ 2% of the variance in both educational attainment and cognitive function. Genes in the region of the loci have previously been associated with health, cognitive, and central nervous system phenotypes, and bioinformatics analyses suggest the involvement of the anterior caudate nucleus. These findings provide promising candidate SNPs for follow-up work, and our effect size estimates can anchor power analyses in social-science genetics.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1467-1471
Number of pages5
Issue number6139
Early online date30 May 2013
Publication statusPublished - 21 Jun 2013


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