Investigating Shared Genetic Basis Across Tourette Syndrome and Comorbid Neurodevelopmental Disorders Along the Impulsivity-Compulsivity Spectrum.
Yang Z., Wu H., Lee PH., Tsetsos F., Davis LK., Yu D., Lee SH., Dalsgaard S., Haavik J., Barta C., Zayats T., Eapen V., Wray NR., Devlin B., Daly M., Neale B., Børglum AD., Crowley JJ., Scharf J., Mathews CA., Faraone SV., Franke B., Mattheisen M., Smoller JW., Paschou P.
BACKGROUND: Tourette syndrome (TS) is often found comorbid with other neurodevelopmental disorders across the impulsivity-compulsivity spectrum, with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) as most prevalent. This points to the possibility of a common etiological thread along an impulsivity-compulsivity continuum. METHODS: Investigating the shared genetic basis across TS, ADHD, ASD, and OCD, we undertook an evaluation of cross-disorder genetic architecture and systematic meta-analysis, integrating summary statistics from the latest genome-wide association studies (93,294 individuals, 6,788,510 markers). RESULTS: As previously identified, a common unifying factor connects TS, ADHD, and ASD, while TS and OCD show the highest genetic correlation in pairwise testing among these disorders. Thanks to a more homogeneous set of disorders and a targeted approach that is guided by genetic correlations, we were able to identify multiple novel hits and regions that seem to play a pleiotropic role for the specific disorders analyzed here and could not be identified through previous studies. In the TS-ADHD-ASD genome-wide association study single nucleotide polymorphism-based and gene-based meta-analysis, we uncovered 13 genome-wide significant regions that host single nucleotide polymorphisms with a high posterior probability for association with all three studied disorders (m-value > 0.9), 11 of which were not identified in previous cross-disorder analysis. In contrast, we also identified two additional pleiotropic regions in the TS-OCD meta-analysis. Through conditional analysis, we highlighted genes and genetic regions that play a specific role in a TS-ADHD-ASD genetic factor versus TS-OCD. Cross-disorder tissue specificity analysis implicated the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal gland axis in TS-ADHD-ASD. CONCLUSIONS: Our work underlines the value of redefining the framework for research across traditional diagnostic categories.