Genome-wide association analyses define pathogenic signaling pathways and prioritize drug targets for IgA nephropathy

Nat Genet. 2023 Jul;55(7):1091-1105. doi: 10.1038/s41588-023-01422-x. Epub 2023 Jun 19.


IgA nephropathy (IgAN) is a progressive form of kidney disease defined by glomerular deposition of IgA. Here we performed a genome-wide association study of 10,146 kidney-biopsy-diagnosed IgAN cases and 28,751 controls across 17 international cohorts. We defined 30 genome-wide significant risk loci explaining 11% of disease risk. A total of 16 loci were new, including TNFSF4/TNFSF18, REL, CD28, PF4V1, LY86, LYN, ANXA3, TNFSF8/TNFSF15, REEP3, ZMIZ1, OVOL1/RELA, ETS1, IGH, IRF8, TNFRSF13B and FCAR. The risk loci were enriched in gene orthologs causing abnormal IgA levels when genetically manipulated in mice. We also observed a positive genetic correlation between IgAN and serum IgA levels. High polygenic score for IgAN was associated with earlier onset of kidney failure. In a comprehensive functional annotation analysis of candidate causal genes, we observed convergence of biological candidates on a common set of inflammatory signaling pathways and cytokine ligand-receptor pairs, prioritizing potential new drug targets.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Genome-Wide Association Study
  • Glomerulonephritis, IGA* / diagnosis
  • Glomerulonephritis, IGA* / drug therapy
  • Glomerulonephritis, IGA* / genetics
  • Immunoglobulin A / genetics
  • Mice


  • Immunoglobulin A