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Approved research

The genetics basis of liver function and its relationship to hepatitis C treatment

Principal Investigator: Dr Daniel Wilson
Approved Research ID: 37784
Approval date: April 13th 2018

Lay summary

Human genetics variation plays a role in liver diseases and liver function. We propose to use the UK Biobank data to identify genetic variants associated with liver-related diseases and liver function, in the context of hepatitis C susceptibility, treatment and prognosis. We plan to integrate analysis with genetic and clinical data generated by the MRC Stratified Medicine project STOP-HCV ( to identify genetic variants predisposing to hepatitis C. We also aim to analyse UK biobank data relating to liver function and disease to understand the genetic basis to these traits andtheir importance in relation to the treatment of Hepatitis C. As part of the STOP-HCV consortium we are generating genome-wide genotypes on Affymetrix?s UK Biobank Axiom Array in over 3000 NHS patients who have chronic hepatitis C infections. Our analysis meets UK Biobank?s aims by both augmenting our own data to boost discovery, and by allowing a detailed exploration of liver-related phenotypes in the same UK patient population. Hepatitis research has become one of today's most promising aspects of personalised genomics. Identification of variants determine initial response to infections, and altered treatments response, and would provide insights to help optimise personalised approaches to medicine, leading to safer, more effective, interventions. Our research will use the UK Biobank data to understand the mechanisms which underlie liver function and dysfunction in the general population. To do so we will identify genetic variations which correlate with incidences of liver-related disease and normal function. We will then compare and contrast these genetic variants with those that relate to clinical features of hepatitis C infection. We will use the data to identify shared mechanisms and to look at how the new information might help develop new treatments or strategies for personalising care of liver disease, particularly as a result of viral infection. Full cohort.