Immunological lessons from genome-wide association studies of infections

Curr Opin Immunol. 2021 Oct:72:87-93. doi: 10.1016/j.coi.2021.03.017. Epub 2021 Apr 18.


Over the past few years, genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have been increasingly applied to identify host genetic factors influencing clinical and laboratory traits related to immunity and infection, and to understand the interplay between the host and the microbial genomes. By screening large cohorts of individuals suffering from various infectious diseases, GWAS explored resistance against infection, natural history of the disease, development of life-threatening clinical signs, and innate and adaptive immune responses. These efforts provided fundamental insight on the role of major genes in the interindividual variability in the response to infection and on the mechanisms of the immune response against human pathogens both at the individual and population levels.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biomarkers
  • Disease Resistance / genetics
  • Disease Resistance / immunology
  • Disease Susceptibility / immunology*
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease*
  • Genome-Wide Association Study*
  • Host-Pathogen Interactions / genetics
  • Host-Pathogen Interactions / immunology
  • Humans
  • Immunity / genetics
  • Immunity / immunology
  • Infections / etiology*


  • Biomarkers