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International consortium of researchers identify seven new genetic risk factors for AMD

A Nature Genetics paper, authored by 156 collaborating scientists from 18 independent research groups (the AMD Consortium), has reported the results of a large study on genetic associations for age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The international consortium performed a collaborative genome-wide association study (GWAS) that included >17,100 advanced AMD cases and >60,000 control subjects. Results of the study showed that 19 loci associated with the disease with a P<5X10^8, involving potential gene candidates having roles in the regulation of complement activity, lipid metabolism, extracellular matrix remodeling and angiogenesis. The results included seven loci, reported for the first time, with associations reaching a P<5X10^8, close to the COL8A1-FILIP1L, IER3-DDR1, SLC16A8, TGFBR1, RAD51B, ADAMTS9 and B3GALTL genes. The authors of the study expect that the findings should provide new directions for biological, genetic and therapeutic studies of AMD.