Identification of a novel missense variant in SPDL1 associated with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Ryan S DhindsaS. Petrovski


Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a fatal disorder characterised by progressive, destructive lung scarring. Despite significant progress, the genetic determinants of this disease remain incompletely defined. Using next generation sequencing data from 752 individuals with sporadic IPF and 119,055 controls, we performed both variant- and gene-level analyses to identify novel IPF genetic risk factors. Our variant-level analysis revealed a novel rare missense variant in SPDL1 (NM_017785.5 p.Arg20Gln; p = 2.4 x 10-7, odds ratio = 2.87). This signal was independently replicated in the FinnGen cohort (combined p = 2.2 x 10-20), firmly associating this variant as a novel IPF risk allele. SPDL1 encodes Spindly, a protein involved in mitotic checkpoint signalling during cell division that has not been previously described in fibrosis. Our results highlight a novel mechanism underlying IPF, providing the potential for new therapeutic discoveries in a disease of great unmet need.

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