Risk prediction for complex diseases: application to Parkinson disease

Genet Med. 2013 May;15(5):361-7. doi: 10.1038/gim.2012.109. Epub 2012 Dec 6.


Purpose: The aim of this study was to evaluate the risk of Parkinson disease using clinical and demographic data alone and when combined with information from genes associated with Parkinson disease.

Methods: A total of 1,967 participants in the dbGAP NeuroGenetics Research Consortium data set were included. Single-nucleotide polymorphisms associated with Parkinson disease at a genome-wide significance level in previous genome-wide association studies were included in risk prediction. Risk allele scores were calculated as the weighted count of the minor alleles. Five models were constructed. Discriminatory capability was evaluated using the area under the curve.

Results: Both family history and genetic risk scores increased risk for Parkinson disease. Although the fullest model, which included both family history and genetic risk information, resulted in the highest area under the curve, there were no significant differences between models using family history alone and those using genetic information alone.

Conclusion: Adding genome-wide association study-derived genotypes, family history information, or both to standard demographic risk factors for Parkinson disease resulted in an improvement in discriminatory capacity. In the full model, the contributions of genotype data and family history information to discriminatory capacity were similar, and both were statistically significant. This suggests that there is limited overlap between genetic risk factors identified through genome-wide association study and unmeasured susceptibility variants captured by family history. Our results are similar to those of studies of other complex diseases and indicate that genetic risk prediction for Parkinson disease requires identification of additional genetic risk factors and/or better methods for risk prediction in order to achieve a degree of risk prediction that is clinically useful.Genet Med 2013:15(5):361-367.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Alleles
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Female
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease*
  • Genome-Wide Association Study
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Models, Genetic
  • Multifactorial Inheritance
  • Parkinson Disease / diagnosis*
  • Parkinson Disease / genetics*
  • Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide
  • Prognosis
  • ROC Curve
  • Risk