Insights into malaria susceptibility using genome-wide data on 17,000 individuals from Africa, Asia and Oceania

News article
16 December 2019

In the latest publication from the MalariaGEN consortium, we report on genotype data that has been generated for over 17,000 individuals at 15 million genetic variants, with additional population sequence data and genotyping of replication samples, to conduct the largest genome-wide association study of a tropical infectious disease to date. The data from this project spans populations in sub-Saharan Africa, south-east Asia and Oceania and have now been released for other researchers to make use of.

"Relatively little data on the human genetics of tropical populations has been available to researchers in the past," explains author Dr. Gavin Band. "Our ability to construct this dataset is testament to the network of researchers who led independent studies and contributed samples and expertise to building it."

The publication uses these data to generate new insights into malaria susceptibility. These include a detailed mapping of genetic effect sizes across malaria-endemic populations, for variants which include known determinants of red blood cell phenotypes.