Effects of interaction between angiotensin I-converting enzyme polymorphisms and lifestyle on adiposity in adolescent Greeks
AuthorMoran, C. N.; Vassilopoulos, C.; Tsiokanos, A.; Jamurtas, A. Z.; Bailey, M. E. S.; Wilson, R. H.; Pitsiladis, Y. P.
Genetic variation in the human angiotensin I-converting enzyme (ACE) gene has been associated with many heritable traits, including obesity. Herein, we report the results of a study of obesity-related phenotypes and lifestyle in 1016 teen-aged Greeks. We show that there is a strong association (p = 0.001) between subcutaneous fat and the ACE insertion/deletion (I/D) polymorphism in females, possession of genotypes containing the D allele being associated with increased fat thickness. This association is strongest in females who participate in no extra exercise and accounts for 6.5% of the phenotypic variance in fat thickness by ANOVA. The association is additive, with the mean phenotypic values in heterozygotes intermediate between the means of the two homozygotes, and the association acts at both extremes of the fat thickness distribution in a classical polygenic manner. Other ACE polymorphisms (rs4424958, rs4311) that define major haplotypes in European populations fail to provide stronger associations with the subcutaneous fat phenotype. Because ACE I/D is the polymorphism most strongly associated with circulating ACE levels in European populations, we propose that the functional allelic differences that influence circulating ACE levels also mediate the associations with the obesity-related phenotypes studied here.