The Intergenerational Impact of Genetic and Psychological Factors on Blood Pressure (InterGEN) Study: Design and Methods for Complex DNA Analysis

Biol Res Nurs. 2016 Oct;18(5):521-30. doi: 10.1177/1099800416645399. Epub 2016 Apr 26.


The Intergenerational Impact of Genetic and Psychological Factors on Blood Pressure (InterGEN) study aims to delineate the independent and interaction effects of genomic (genetic and epigenetic) and psychological-environmental (maternally perceived racial discrimination, mental health, and parenting behavior) factors on blood pressure (BP) among African American mother-child dyads over time. The purpose of this article is to describe the two-step genetic and epigenetic approach that will be executed to explore Gene × Environment interactions on BP using a longitudinal cohort design. Procedure for the single collection of DNA at Time 1 includes the use of the Oragene 500-format saliva sample collection tube, which provides enough DNA for both the Illumina Multi-Ethnic Genotyping and 850K EPIC methylation analyses. BP readings, height, weight, percentage of body fat, and percentage of body water will be measured on all participants every 6 months for 2 years for a total of 4 time points. Genomic data analyses to be completed include multivariate modeling, assessment of population admixture and structure, and extended analyses including Bonferroni correction, false discovery rate methods, Monte Carlo approach, EIGENSTRAT methods, and so on, to determine relationships among both main and interaction effects of genetic, epigenetic, and psychological environmental factors on BP.

Keywords: African Americans; DNA methylation; Infinium MethylationEPIC (850K) BeadChip; blood pressure; children; gene–environment interaction; women.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • African Americans / genetics*
  • African Americans / psychology*
  • Blood Pressure / genetics*
  • Body Weight / genetics*
  • Child
  • Cohort Studies
  • DNA / analysis*
  • Female
  • Gene-Environment Interaction
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease
  • Genotype
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mother-Child Relations
  • Saliva / chemistry*
  • Stress, Psychological / genetics*
  • United States
  • Young Adult


  • DNA