|Title||Trans-ethnic Meta-analysis of Interactions between Genetics and Early Life Socioeconomic Context on Memory Performance and Decline in Older Americans.|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||Forthcoming|
|Authors||Faul, J, Kho, M, Zhao, W, Rumfelt, KE, Yu, M, Mitchell, C, Smith, JA|
|Journal||The Journals of Gerontology, Series A|
|Keywords||Childhood SES, Cognition, Education, Epidemiology, Gene-Environment Interaction, Genetics, Memory, Rare Variant|
Later life cognitive function is influenced by genetics as well as early- and later-life socioeconomic context. However, few studies have examined the interaction between genetics and early childhood factors. Using gene-based tests (iSKAT/iSKAT-O), we examined whether common and/or rare exonic variants in 39 gene regions previously associated with cognitive performance, dementia, and related traits had an interaction with childhood socioeconomic context (parental education and financial strain) on memory performance or decline in European ancestry (EA, N=10,468) and African ancestry (AA, N=2,252) participants from the Health and Retirement Study. Of the 39 genes, 22 in EA and 19 in AA had nominally significant interactions with at least one childhood socioeconomic measure on memory performance and/or decline; however, all but one (father's education by SLC24A4 in AA) were not significant after multiple testing correction (FDR <0.05). In trans-ethnic meta-analysis, two genes interacted with childhood socioeconomic context (FDR <0.05): mother's education by MS4A4A on memory performance, and father's education by SLC24A4 on memory decline. Both interactions remained significant (p<0.05) after adjusting for respondent's own educational attainment, APOE ε4 status, lifestyle factors, BMI, and comorbidities. For both interactions in EA and AA, the genetic effect was stronger in participants with low parental education. Examination of common and rare variants in genes discovered through GWAS shows that childhood context may interact with key gene regions to jointly impact later life memory function and decline. Genetic effects may be more salient for those with lower childhood socioeconomic status.