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Your Environment. Your Health.

Publication Detail

Title: A missense variant in FTCD is associated with arsenic metabolism and toxicity phenotypes in Bangladesh.

Authors: Pierce, Brandon L; Tong, Lin; Dean, Samantha; Argos, Maria; Jasmine, Farzana; Rakibuz-Zaman, Muhammad; Sarwar, Golam; Islam, Md Tariqul; Shahriar, Hasan; Islam, Tariqul; Rahman, Mahfuzar; Yunus, Md; Lynch, Vincent J; Oglesbee, Devin; Graziano, Joseph H; Kibriya, Muhammad G; Gamble, Mary V; Ahsan, Habibul

Published In PLoS Genet, (2019 03)

Abstract: Inorganic arsenic (iAs) is a carcinogen, and exposure to iAs via food and water is a global public health problem. iAs-contaminated drinking water alone affects >100 million people worldwide, including ~50 million in Bangladesh. Once absorbed into the blood stream, most iAs is converted to mono-methylated (MMA) and then di-methylated (DMA) forms, facilitating excretion in urine. Arsenic metabolism efficiency varies among individuals, in part due to genetic variation near AS3MT (arsenite methyltransferase; 10q24.32). To identify additional arsenic metabolism loci, we measured protein-coding variants across the human exome for 1,660 Bangladeshi individuals participating in the Health Effects of Arsenic Longitudinal Study (HEALS). Among the 19,992 coding variants analyzed exome-wide, the minor allele (A) of rs61735836 (p.Val101Met) in exon 3 of FTCD (formiminotransferase cyclodeaminase) was associated with increased urinary iAs% (P = 8x10-13), increased MMA% (P = 2x10-16) and decreased DMA% (P = 6x10-23). Among 2,401 individuals with arsenic-induced skin lesions (an indicator of arsenic toxicity and cancer risk) and 2,472 controls, carrying the low-efficiency A allele (frequency = 7%) was associated with increased skin lesion risk (odds ratio = 1.35; P = 1x10-5). rs61735836 is in weak linkage disequilibrium with all nearby variants. The high-efficiency/major allele (G/Valine) is human-specific and eliminates a start codon at the first 5´-proximal Kozak sequence in FTCD, suggesting selection against an alternative translation start site. FTCD is critical for catabolism of histidine, a process that generates one-carbon units that can enter the one-carbon/folate cycle, which provides methyl groups for arsenic metabolism. In our study population, FTCD and AS3MT SNPs together explain ~10% of the variation in DMA% and support a causal effect of arsenic metabolism efficiency on arsenic toxicity (i.e., skin lesions). In summary, this work identifies a coding variant in FTCD associated with arsenic metabolism efficiency, providing new evidence supporting the established link between one-carbon/folate metabolism and arsenic toxicity.

PubMed ID: 30893314 Exiting the NIEHS site

MeSH Terms: Adult; Alleles; Ammonia-Lyases/genetics*; Ammonia-Lyases/physiology; Arsenic Poisoning; Arsenic/metabolism; Arsenic/toxicity*; Bangladesh; Environmental Exposure; Female; Folic Acid/metabolism; Gene Frequency/genetics; Glutamate Formimidoyltransferase/genetics*; Glutamate Formimidoyltransferase/physiology; Humans; Male; Methylation; Methyltransferases/genetics*; Methyltransferases/metabolism; Mutation, Missense; Odds Ratio; Phenotype; Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide/genetics; Risk Factors; Skin Diseases/chemically induced; Skin Diseases/genetics; Water Pollutants, Chemical

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