Education is associated with health related lifestyle choices including leisure-time physical inactivity. However, the longitudinal associations between education and inactivity merit further studies. We investigated the association between education and leisure-time physical inactivity over a 35-year follow-up with four time points controlling for multiple covariates including familial confounding.
This study of the population-based Finnish Twin Cohort consisted of 5254 twin individuals born in 1945-1957 (59 % women), of which 1604 were complete same-sexed twin pairs. Data on leisure-time physical activity and multiple covariates was available from four surveys conducted in 1975, 1981, 1990 and 2011 (response rates 72 to 89 %). The association between years of education and leisure-time physical inactivity (
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Cites: Twin Res Hum Genet. 2013 Feb;16(1):157-6223298696
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Low-rate smoking patterns are common, but their pulmonary effects remain poorly known. The study hypothesis was that any level of daily smoking may cause chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). We investigated the association between longitudinal smoking patterns and COPD using logistic regressions and survival models adjusted for multiple covariates. Data from Finnish Twin Cohort surveys were used. Participants (n = 21,609) were grouped into categories describing 1981 smoking and change in smoking during 1975-1981. Light smoking was defined as
The association of coronary heart and cardiovascular mortality with noise sensitivity was studied. We also investigated how this association is affected by self-reported lifetime noise exposure. In 1988 a case-control study, based on the Finnish Twin Cohort, was carried out to investigate the relationship between noise and hypertension (n=1495). Potential confounders were obtained from questionnaire in 1981 for the same individuals. Data on deaths and causes of death were obtained from record linkage to the nationwide register of death certificates. All deaths that occurred among the study population during the 15 years of follow-up were classified as being due to all causes (n=382), to cardiovascular diseases (n=193), including the number of deaths due to coronary heart diseases (n=111) and to other causes than cardiovascular diseases (n=189). Cardiovascular mortality (Hazard ratio 1.80, 95% CI 1.07-3.04) was significantly increased among noise-sensitive women. Among men, there were no statistically significant effects. Noise sensitivity may be a risk factor for cardiovascular mortality in women.
Estimates of familial cancer risk from population-based studies are essential components of cancer risk prediction.
To estimate familial risk and heritability of cancer types in a large twin cohort.
Prospective study of 80,309 monozygotic and 123,382 same-sex dizygotic twin individuals (N?=?203,691) within the population-based registers of Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden. Twins were followed up a median of 32 years between 1943 and 2010. There were 50,990 individuals who died of any cause, and 3804 who emigrated and were lost to follow-up.
Shared environmental and heritable risk factors among pairs of twins.
The main outcome was incident cancer. Time-to-event analyses were used to estimate familial risk (risk of cancer in an individual given a twin's development of cancer) and heritability (proportion of variance in cancer risk due to interindividual genetic differences) with follow-up via cancer registries. Statistical models adjusted for age and follow-up time, and accounted for censoring and competing risk of death.
A total of 27,156 incident cancers were diagnosed in 23,980 individuals, translating to a cumulative incidence of 32%. Cancer was diagnosed in both twins among 1383 monozygotic (2766 individuals) and 1933 dizygotic (2866 individuals) pairs. Of these, 38% of monozygotic and 26% of dizygotic pairs were diagnosed with the same cancer type. There was an excess cancer risk in twins whose co-twin was diagnosed with cancer, with estimated cumulative risks that were an absolute 5% (95% CI, 4%-6%) higher in dizygotic (37%; 95% CI, 36%-38%) and an absolute 14% (95% CI, 12%-16%) higher in monozygotic twins (46%; 95% CI, 44%-48%) whose twin also developed cancer compared with the cumulative risk in the overall cohort (32%). For most cancer types, there were significant familial risks and the cumulative risks were higher in monozygotic than dizygotic twins. Heritability of cancer overall was 33% (95% CI, 30%-37%). Significant heritability was observed for the cancer types of skin melanoma (58%; 95% CI, 43%-73%), prostate (57%; 95% CI, 51%-63%), nonmelanoma skin (43%; 95% CI, 26%-59%), ovary (39%; 95% CI, 23%-55%), kidney (38%; 95% CI, 21%-55%), breast (31%; 95% CI, 11%-51%), and corpus uteri (27%; 95% CI, 11%-43%).
In this long-term follow-up study among Nordic twins, there was significant excess familial risk for cancer overall and for specific types of cancer, including prostate, melanoma, breast, ovary, and uterus. This information about hereditary risks of cancers may be helpful in patient education and cancer risk counseling.
We investigated the genetic component of noise sensitivity using a twin-study design. The study sample consisted of 573 same-sexed twin pairs from the Finnish Twin Cohort. The 131 monozygotic (MZ) and 442 dizygotic (DZ) twin pairs with an age range of 31 to 88 years replied to a questionnaire on noise and health-related items in 1988. The noise sensitivity of respondents was defined as high, quite high, quite low or low. MZ pairs were more similar with regards noise sensitivity than DZ pairs, and quantitative genetic modeling indicated significant familiality. The best z-fitting genetic model provided an estimate of heritability of 36% (95% CI = .20-.50) and when hearing impaired subjects were excluded this rose to 40% (95% CI = .24-.54). In conclusion, noise sensitivity does aggregate in families and probably has a genetic component.
Various pivotal stages in smoking behavior can be identified, including initiation, conversion from experimenting to established use, development of tolerance, and cessation. Previous studies have shown high heritability for age of smoking initiation and cessation; however, time-to-event genome-wide association studies aiming to identify underpinning genes that accelerate or delay these transitions are missing to date.
We investigated which single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) across the whole genome contribute to the hazard ratio of transition between different stages of smoking behavior by performing time-to-event analyses within a large Finnish twin family cohort (N?=?1962), and further conducted mediation analyses of plausible intermediate traits for significant SNPs.
Genome-wide significant signals were detected for three of the four transitions: (1) for smoking cessation on 10p14 (P?=?4.47e-08 for rs72779075 flanked by RP11-575N15 and GATA3), (2) for tolerance on 11p13 (P?=?1.29e-08 for rs11031684 in RP1-65P5.1), mediated by smoking quantity, and on 9q34.12 (P?=?3.81e-08 for rs2304808 in FUBP3), independent of smoking quantity, and (3) for smoking initiation on 19q13.33 (P?=?3.37e-08 for rs73050610 flanked by TRPM4 and SLC6A16) in analysis adjusted for first time sensations. Although our top SNPs did not replicate, another SNP in the TRPM4-SLC6A16 gene region showed statistically significant association after region-based multiple testing correction in an independent Australian twin family sample.
Our results suggest that the functional effect of the TRPM4-SLC6A16 gene region deserves further investigation, and that complex neurotransmitter networks including dopamine and glutamate may play a critical role in smoking initiation. Moreover, comparison of these results implies that genetic contributions to the complex smoking behavioral phenotypes vary among the transitions.
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Cites: Am J Psychiatry. 2012 Jul;169(7):735-4222648373
Twin studies suggest a genetic component in diurnal types. In 1981, a questionnaire sent to the Older Finnish Twin Cohort yielded responses from 2836 adult monozygotic (MZ) and 5917 like-sexed dizygotic (DZ) twin pairs with four category self-report on diurnal type. We used structural equation modelling to estimate genetic and environmental components of variance in morningness and eveningness. The model fitting was best when the morningness and the eveningness were analysed together. The ADE-model (including additive genetic, dominant genetic and non-shared environmental effects) fitted best to the data. ADE-models for men and women separately did not differ in a statistically significant manner from the combined model, and similarly ADE-models for young and old age groups separately did not differ either. The estimate for overall genetic effect (broad sense heritability) was 49.7% (95% confidence interval 46.4-52.8), with the remainder accounted for by environmental factors not shared by siblings. The variance component estimates for the underlying liability to diurnal type were 11.7% (95% CI 0-23.7) for additive genetic factors, 38.0% (24.7-51.3) for genetic factors due to dominance. Genetic effects thus account for about one-half of the interindividual variability in diurnal type in adults.
Pregnancy- and birth-related factors may have an effect on handedness. Compared with singletons, twins have a lower birth weight, shorter gestational age, and are at higher risk for birth complications. We tested whether the prevalence of left-handedness is higher among twins than singletons, and if so, whether that difference is fully explained by pregnancy and birth-related differences between twins and singletons. We analyzed Finnish population-based datasets; included were 8,786 twins and 5,892 singletons with information on birth weight (n = 12,381), Apgar scores (n = 11,129), and gestational age (n = 11,811). Two twin cohorts were involved: FinnTwin12 included twins born during 1983-1987, and FinnTwin16 included twins born during 1974-1979. We had two comparison groups of singletons: 4,101 individuals born during 1986-1988 and enrolled in the Helsinki Ultrasound Trial, and 1,791 individuals who were partners of FinnTwin16 twins. We used logistic regression models with writing hand as the outcome for comparison and evaluating effects of covariates. Left-handedness was more common in twins (9.67%) than in singletons (8.27%; p = .004). However, Apgar scores were associated with handedness, and after controlling for covariates, we found no difference in the prevalence of left-handedness between twins and singletons. Increased left-handedness among twins, often reported by others, was evident in our data, but only among our older twin cohorts, and that association disappeared after removing effects of perinatal covariates.
We investigated the stability and change of leisure-time physical inactivity in adult men and women during a 35-year follow-up. We also analysed the impact of long-term physical inactivity on the development of body mass index (BMI).
: In this population-based cohort study, 5254 Finnish twin individuals (59% women) participated in four surveys in 1975, 1981, 1990 and 2011. Mean age at baseline was 23.9 years. Individual long-term leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) was categorized into seven classes varying from 'persistently inactive' to 'persistently active'. We used the multivariate multilevel mixed-effects linear regression model and paired-sample t-test in the analyses. Co-twin control design was used for examining within-pair associations.
: Of men 11%, and of women 8%, were persistently inactive. Among both sexes, the mean BMI slope trajectories were steeper among the persistently inactive and those who became inactive than among those who were persistently active. Overall, the inactive participants gained 1.4?kg/m 2 [95% confidence interval (CI) 1.2 to 1.7] more in weight than did the active participants from 1975 to 2011. Among twin pairs discordant for LTPA, the corresponding difference was 1.4?kg/m 2 (95% CI 0.83 to 2.0) in dizygotic pairs and 0.68?kg/m 2 (95% CI 0.05 to1.3) in monozygotic pairs.
Over a 35-year time span from young adulthood, persistently inactive participants and those who had become inactive had greater weight increases than those who were persistently active. This association was also found in twin-pair analyses, although attenuated in monozygotic pairs. This may support the importance of LTPA in weight management, although further causal inference is required.
Lower birthweight is associated with increased susceptibility to cardiometabolic diseases in adulthood, but the underlying molecular pathways are incompletely understood. We examined associations of birthweight with a comprehensive metabolic profile measured in adolescents and adults.
High-throughput nuclear magnetic resonance metabolomics and biochemical assays were used to quantify 87 circulating metabolic measures in seven cohorts from Finland and the UK, comprising altogether 18 288 individuals (mean age 26 years, range 15-75). Metabolic associations with birthweight were assessed by linear regression models adjusted for sex, gestational age and age at blood sampling. The metabolic associations with birthweight were compared with the corresponding associations with adult body mass index (BMI).
Lower birthweight adjusted for gestational age was adversely associated with cardiometabolic biomarkers, including lipoprotein subclasses, fatty acids, amino acids and markers of inflammation and impaired liver function (P
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Cites: Int J Epidemiol. 2013 Feb;42(1):111-27 PMID 22507743