University Of Tasmania

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Identifying the lipidomic effects of a rare loss-of-function deletion in ANGPTL3

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-20, 23:53 authored by Nicholas BlackburnNicholas Blackburn, Meikle, PJ, Peralta, JM, Kumar, S, Leandro, AC, Bellinger, MA, Giles, C, Huynh, K, Mahaney, MC, Goring, HHH, VandeBerg, JL, Williams-Blangero, S, Glahn, DC, Duggirala, R, Blangero, J, Michael, LF, Curran, JE

Background: The identification and understanding of therapeutic targets for atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) is of fundamental importance given its global health and economic burden. Inhibition of angiopoietin-like 3 (ANGPTL3) has demonstrated a cardioprotective effect, showing promise for ASCVD treatment, and is currently the focus of ongoing clinical trials. Here we assessed the genetic basis of variation in ANGPTL3 levels in the San Antonio Family Heart Study.

Methods: We assayed ANGPTL3 protein levels in ~1,000 Mexican Americans from extended pedigrees. By drawing upon existing plasma lipidome profiles and genomic data we conducted analyses to understand the genetic basis to variation in ANGPTL3 protein levels, and accordingly the correlation with the plasma lipidome.

Results: In a variance components framework we identified that variation in ANGPTL3 was significantly heritable (h2=0.33, P=1.31×10-16). To explore the genetic basis of this heritability, we conducted a genome-wide linkage scan and identified significant linkage (LOD = 6.18) to a locus on chromosome 1 at 90 cM, corresponding to the ANGPTL3 gene location. In the genomes of 23 individuals from a single pedigree, we identified a loss of function (LoF) variant, rs398122988 (N121Kfs*2), in ANGPTL3, that was significantly associated with lower ANGPTL3 levels (β=−1.69 SDU, P=3.367×10-13), and accounted for the linkage signal at this locus. Given the known role of ANGPTL3 as an inhibitor of endothelial and lipoprotein lipase we explored the association of ANGPTL3 protein levels and rs398122988 with the plasma lipidome and related phenotypes, identifying novel associations with phosphatidylinositols.

Conclusions: Variation in ANGPTL3 protein levels is heritable and under significant genetic control. Both ANGPTL3 levels and LoF variants in ANGPTL3 have significant associations with the plasma lipidome. These findings further our understanding of ANGPTL3 as a therapeutic target for ASCVD.


Publication title

Circulation. Genomic and Precision Medicine




Menzies Institute for Medical Research


Lippincott Williams & Wilkins

Place of publication

United States

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Diagnosis of human diseases and conditions; Evaluation of health outcomes; Expanding knowledge in the biological sciences