1932

Abstract

Since the identification of sickle cell trait as a heritable form of resistance to malaria, candidate gene studies, linkage analysis paired with sequencing, and genome-wide association (GWA) studies have revealed many examples of genetic resistance and susceptibility to infectious diseases. GWA studies enabled the identification of many common variants associated with small shifts in susceptibility to infectious diseases. This is exemplified by multiple loci associated with leprosy, malaria, HIV, tuberculosis, and coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), which illuminate genetic architecture and implicate pathways underlying pathophysiology. Despite these successes, most of the heritability of infectious diseases remains to be explained. As the field advances, current limitations may be overcome by applying methodological innovations such as cellular GWA studies and phenome-wide association (PheWA) studies as well as by improving methodological rigor with more precise case definitions, deeper phenotyping, increased cohort diversity, and functional validation of candidate loci in the laboratory or human challenge studies.

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2022-11-30
2024-06-23
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