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One size does not fit all. Genomics differentiates among anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge-eating disorder

Hübel, C.; Abdulkadir, M.; Herle, M.; Loos, R.J.F.; Breen, G.; Bulik, C.M.; Micali, N.

International Journal of Eating Disorders 54(5): 785-793

2021


ISSN/ISBN: 1098-108X
PMID: 33644868
DOI: 10.1002/eat.23481
Accession: 079117246

Genome-wide association studies have identified multiple genomic regions associated with anorexia nervosa. No genome-wide studies of other eating disorders, such as bulimia nervosa and binge-eating disorder, have been performed, despite their substantial heritability. Exploratively, we aimed to identify traits that are genetically associated with binge-type eating disorders. We calculated genome-wide polygenic scores for 269 trait and disease outcomes using PRSice v2.2 and their association with anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge-eating disorder in up to 640 cases and 17,050 controls from the UK Biobank. Significant associations were tested for replication in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (up to 217 cases and 3,018 controls). Individuals with binge-type eating disorders had higher polygenic scores than controls for other psychiatric disorders, including depression, schizophrenia, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and higher polygenic scores for body mass index. Our findings replicate some of the known comorbidities of eating disorders on a genomic level and motivate a deeper investigation of shared and unique genomic factors across the three primary eating disorders.

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