Aims: Syncope is a common condition associated with frequent hospitalization or visits to the emergency department. Family aggregation and twin studies have shown that syncope has a heritable component. We investigated whether common genetic variants predispose to syncope and collapse.
Methods and results: We used genome-wide association data on syncope on 408 961 individuals with European ancestry from the UK Biobank study. In a replication study, we used the Integrative Psychiatric Research Consortium (iPSYCH) cohort (n = 86 189), to investigate the risk of incident syncope stratified by genotype carrier status. We report on a genome-wide significant locus located on chromosome 2q32.1 [odds ratio = 1.13, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.10-1.17, P = 5.8 × 10-15], with lead single nucleotide polymorphism rs12465214 in proximity to the gene zinc finger protein 804a (ZNF804A). This association was also shown in the iPSYCH cohort, where homozygous carriers of the C allele conferred an increased hazard ratio (1.30, 95% CI 1.15-1.46, P = 1.68 × 10-5) of incident syncope. Quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis showed ZNF804A to be expressed most abundantly in brain tissue.
Conclusion: We identified a genome-wide significant locus (rs12465214) associated with syncope and collapse. The association was replicated in an independent cohort. This is the first genome-wide association study to associate a locus with syncope and collapse.
Keywords: Genetic; Genome-wide association study; Syncope.
© The Author(s) 2019. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Society of Cardiology.