Male-pattern baldness susceptibility locus at 20p11

    October 2008 in “Nature Genetics
    J. Brent Richards, Xin Yuan, Frank Geller, Dawn Waterworth, Veronique Bataille, Daniel Glass, Kijoung Song, Gérard Waeber, Peter Vollenweider, Katja K.H. Aben, Lambertus A. Kiemeney, G. Bragi Walters, Nicole Soranzo, Unnur Thorsteinsdottir, Augustine Kong, Thorunn Rafnar, Panos Deloukas, Patrick Sulem, Hreinn Stefansson, Kari Stefansson, Tim D. Spector, Vincent Mooser
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    TLDR Researchers found a new gene area linked to male-pattern baldness, which, along with another gene, significantly increases the risk of hair loss in men.
    In 2008, researchers conducted a genome-wide association study with 1,125 men and discovered a new locus at chromosome 20p11.22 linked to male-pattern baldness. This association was confirmed in an additional 1,650 men, with the risk allele rs1160312 showing a significant correlation (OR = 1.60, P = 1.1 × 10^-14). Men with risk alleles at both this locus and the androgen receptor (AR) gene had a sevenfold higher chance of developing androgenic alopecia (OR = 7.12, P = 3.7 × 10^-15). The study also indicated a potential link between the risk allele and hair loss in women, though it called for further research with larger cohorts. The two loci together accounted for 13.7% of the variance in androgenic alopecia. The findings suggest these genetic markers could be used to identify men at high risk for androgenic alopecia and may inform gene therapy approaches for hair loss treatment.
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