Genetic variants affect risk of endometriosis

Genetic variants affect the chances of a woman developing the gynaecological disease endometriosis, according to a new study.

There are two different variants which increase the risk of females getting the disease, researchers from the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics and the Nuffield Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, University of Oxford; the Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Australia, and Brigham; and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, US, found.

The genomes of more than 5,500 women diagnosed with the disease in the UK, Australia and US were compared with those of around 10,000 healthy participants.

"We've known for some time that endometriosis is heritable, but until now we have been unable to find any robust genetic variants that influence a woman's risk of developing the disease," said Dr Krina Zondervan, a fellow at the Wellcome Trust.

Variants in chromosome 7 and chromosome 1 are believed to affect the chance of getting endometriosis, the researchers found.

Dr Zondervan said the study was "a breakthrough" as "it provides the first strong evidence that variations in DNA make some women more likely to develop endometriosis".

Endometriosis is a common condition where small pieces of the lining of the womb are found outside of it, in the fallopian tubes, ovaries or vagina, among other places.

Posted by Alexandra George ADNFCR-2094-ID-800288455-ADNFCR