The 22q11.2 deletion syndrome (22q11.2DS; DiGeorge syndrome/velocardiofacial syndrome) occurs in 1 of 4000 live births, and 60% to 70% of affected individuals have congenital heart disease, ranging from mild to severe. In our cohort of 1472 subjects with 22q11.2DS, a total of 62% (n=906) have congenital heart disease and 36% (n=326) of these have tetralogy of Fallot (TOF), comprising the largest subset of severe congenital heart disease in the cohort.Methods and Results—
To identify common genetic variants associated with TOF in individuals with 22q11.2DS, we performed a genome-wide association study using Affymetrix 6.0 array and imputed genotype data. In our cohort, TOF was significantly associated with a genotyped single-nucleotide polymorphism (rs12519770, P=2.98×10−8) in an intron of the adhesion GPR98 (G-protein–coupled receptor V1) gene on chromosome 5q14.3. There was also suggestive evidence of association between TOF and several additional single-nucleotide polymorphisms in this region. Some genome-wide significant loci in introns or noncoding regions could affect regulation of genes nearby or at a distance. On the basis of this possibility, we examined existing Hi-C chromatin conformation data to identify genes that might be under shared transcriptional regulation within the region on 5q14.3. There are 6 genes in a topologically associated domain of chromatin with GPR98, including MEF2C (Myocyte-specific enhancer factor 2C). MEF2C is the only gene that is known to affect heart development in mammals and might be of interest with respect to 22q11.2DS.Conclusions—
In conclusion, common variants may contribute to TOF in 22q11.2DS and may function in cardiac outflow tract development.