These authors contributed equally to this manuscript.
African ancestry, early life exposures, and respiratory morbidity in early childhood
Article first published online: 25 SEP 2011
© 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd
Clinical & Experimental Allergy
Volume 42, Issue 2, pages 265–274, February 2012
How to Cite
- Issue published online: 30 JAN 2012
- Article first published online: 25 SEP 2011
- Manuscript Accepted: 23 AUG 2011
- Manuscript Revised: 19 AUG 2011
- Manuscript Received: 4 APR 2011
- March of Dimes PERI. Grant Number: 20-FY02-56
- NIEHS. Grant Number: R21 ES011666
- NICHD. Grant Number: R01 HD041702
- Food Allergy Initiative and the Sunshine Charitable Foundation
- NIAID. Grant Numbers: R21AI079872, U01AI090727
- Department of Defense. Grant Number: W81XWH-10-1-0123
- NHLBI. Grant Numbers: K23HL093023, HL088133
- early childhood;
- genetic ancestry;
Racial disparities persist in early childhood wheezing and cannot be completely explained by known risk factors.
To evaluate the associations of genetic ancestry and self-identified race with early childhood recurrent wheezing, accounting for socio-economic status (SES) and early life exposures.
We studied 1034 children in an urban, multi-racial, prospective birth cohort. Multivariate logistic regression was used to evaluate the association of genetic ancestry as opposed to self-identified race with recurrent wheezing (>3 episodes). Sequential models accounted for demographic, socio-economic factors and early life risk factors. Genetic ancestry, estimated using 150 ancestry informative markers, was expressed in deciles.
Approximately 6.1% of subjects (mean age 3.1 years) experienced recurrent wheezing. After accounting for SES and demographic factors, African ancestry (OR: 1.16, 95% CI: 1.02–1.31) was significantly associated with recurrent wheezing. By self-reported race, hispanic subjects had a borderline decrease in risk of wheeze compared with African Americans (OR: 0.44, 95% CI: 0.19–1.00), whereas white subjects (OR: 0.46, 95% CI: 0.14–1.57) did not have. After further adjustment for known confounders and early life exposures, both African (OR: 1.19, 95% CI: 1.05–1.34) and European ancestry (OR: 0.84, 95% CI: 0.74–0.94) retained a significant association with recurrent wheezing, as compared with self-identified race (ORwhites: 0.31, 95% CI: 0.09–1.14; ORhispanic: 0.47, 95% CI: 0.20–1.08). There were no significant interactions between ancestry and early life factors on recurrent wheezing.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance
In contrast to self-identified race, African ancestry remained a significant, independent predictor of early childhood wheezing after accounting for early life and other known risk factors associated with lung function changes and asthma. Genetic ancestry may be a powerful way to evaluate wheezing disparities and a proxy for differentially distributed genetic and early life risk factors associated with childhood recurrent wheezing.