Stroke has multiple etiologies, but the underlying genes and pathways are largely unknown. We conducted a multiancestry genome-wide-association meta-analysis in 521,612 individuals (67,162 cases and 454,450 controls) and discovered 22 new stroke risk loci, bringing the total to 32. We further found shared genetic variation with related vascular traits, including blood pressure, cardiac traits, and venous thromboembolism, at individual loci (n = 18), and using genetic risk scores and linkage-disequilibrium-score regression. Several loci exhibited distinct association and pleiotropy patterns for etiological stroke subtypes. Eleven new susceptibility loci indicate mechanisms not previously implicated in stroke pathophysiology, with prioritization of risk variants and genes accomplished through bioinformatics analyses using extensive functional datasets. Stroke risk loci were significantly enriched in drug targets for antithrombotic therapy.
Institute for Stroke and Dementia Research (ISD), University Hospital, LMU Munich, Munich, Germany.
AFGen Consortium, Cohorts for Heart and Aging Research in Genomic Epidemiology (CHARGE) Consortium, International Genomics of Blood Pressure (iGEN-BP) Consortium, INVENT Consortium, STARNET, BioBank Japan Cooperative Hospital Group, COMPASS Consortium, EPIC-CVD Consortium, EPIC-InterAct Consortium, International Stroke Genetics Consortium (ISGC), METASTROKE Consortium, Neurology Working Group of the CHARGE Consortium, NINDS Stroke Genetics Network (SiGN), UK Young Lacunar DNA Study, MEGASTROKE Consortium, MEGASTROKE Consortium: