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Title: Heritability and Sex-Specific Genetic Effects of Self-Reported Physical Activity in a Brazilian Highly Admixed Population
Authors: LEITE, Jean Michel Rocha SampaioSOLER, Julia Maria PavanHORIMOTO, Andrea Roseli Vancan RussoALVIM, Rafael O.PEREIRA, Alexandre C.
Citation: HUMAN HEREDITY, v.84, n.3, p.151-157, 2020
Abstract: Introduction: The engagement in sports or habitual physical activity (PA) has shown an extensive protective role against multiple diseases such as cancer, obesity, and many others. Additionally, PA has also a significant impact on life quality, since it aids with managing stress, preserving cognitive function and memory, and preventing fractures in the elderly. Objective: Considering there has been multiple evidence showing that genetic variation underpins variation of PA-related traits, we aimed to estimate the heritability (h(2)) of these phenotypes in a sample from the Brazilian population and assess whether males and females differ in relation to those estimates. Methods: 2,027 participants from a highly admixed population from Baependi, MG, Brazil, had information regarding their PA and sedentary behavior (SB) phenotypes collected through a questionnaire (IPAQ-SF). After data cleaning and transformation procedures, we obtained four variables to be evaluated: total PA (TPA MET), walking time, (WK MET), moderate-vigorous PA (MVPA MET), and SB. A model selection procedure was performed using a single-step covariate inclusion approach. We tested for BMI, waist, hip and neck circumferences, smoking, and depression separately, and performed correlation tests among covariates. Linear mixed models, selection procedure, and the variance components approach to estimate h(2) were implemented using SOLAR-Eclipse 8.3.1. Results: We obtained estimates of 0.221, 0.109, 0.226, and 0 for TPA MET, WK MET, MVPA MET, and SB, respectively. We found evidence for gene-sex interactions, with males having higher sex-specific heritabilities than females for TPA MET and MVPA MET. In addition, we found higher estimates of the genetic variance component in males than females for most phenotypes. Discussion/Conclusion: The heritability estimates presented in this work show a moderate heritable set of genetic factors affecting PA in a sample from the Brazilian population. The evaluation of the genetic variance component suggests segregating genetic factors in male individuals are more heterogeneous, which can explain why men globally tend to need to practice more intense PA than women to achieve similar health benefits. Hence, these findings have significant implications for the understanding of the genetic architecture of PA and might aid to promote health in the future.
Appears in Collections:

Artigos e Materiais de Revistas Científicas - HC/InCor
Instituto do Coração - HC/InCor

Artigos e Materiais de Revistas Científicas - LIM/13
LIM/13 - Laboratório de Genética e Cardiologia Molecular

Artigos e Materiais de Revistas Científicas - ODS/03
ODS/03 - Saúde e bem-estar

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