Genome-Wide Association Study Identifies Novel Colony Stimulating Factor 1 Locus Conferring Susceptibility to Cryptococcosis in Human Immunodeficiency Virus-Infected South Africans
SourceOpen Forum Infectious Diseases, 7, 11, (2020), article ofaa489
Article / Letter to editor
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Open Forum Infectious Diseases
SubjectRadboudumc 4: lnfectious Diseases and Global Health RIMLS: Radboud Institute for Molecular Life Sciences
BACKGROUND: Cryptococcus is the most common cause of meningitis in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected Africans. Despite universal exposure, only 5%-10% of patients with HIV/acquired immune deficiency syndrome and profound CD4(+) T-cell depletion develop disseminated cryptococcosis: host genetic factors may play a role. Prior targeted immunogenetic studies in cryptococcosis have comprised few Africans. METHODS: We analyzed genome-wide single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) genotype data from 524 patients of African descent: 243 cases (advanced HIV with cryptococcal antigenemia and/or cryptococcal meningitis) and 281 controls (advanced HIV, no history of cryptococcosis, negative serum cryptococcal antigen). RESULTS: Six loci upstream of the colony-stimulating factor 1 (CSF1) gene, encoding macrophage colony-stimulating factor (M-CSF) were associated with susceptibility to cryptococcosis at P < 10(-6) and remained significantly associated in a second South African cohort (83 cases; 128 controls). Meta-analysis of the genotyped CSF1 SNP rs1999713 showed an odds ratio for cryptococcosis susceptibility of 0.53 (95% confidence interval, 0.42-0.66; P = 5.96 × 10(-8)). Ex vivo functional validation and transcriptomic studies confirmed the importance of macrophage activation by M-CSF in host defence against Cryptococcus in HIV-infected patients and healthy, ethnically matched controls. CONCLUSIONS: This first genome-wide association study of susceptibility to cryptococcosis has identified novel and immunologically relevant susceptibility loci, which may help define novel strategies for prevention or immunotherapy of HIV-associated cryptococcal meningitis.
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