Scientific article
Open access

Pancreatic islet enhancer clusters enriched in type 2 diabetes risk-associated variants

Published inNature genetics, vol. 46, no. 2, p. 136-143
Publication date2014

Type 2 diabetes affects over 300 million people, causing severe complications and premature death, yet the underlying molecular mechanisms are largely unknown. Pancreatic islet dysfunction is central in type 2 diabetes pathogenesis, and understanding islet genome regulation could therefore provide valuable mechanistic insights. We have now mapped and examined the function of human islet cis-regulatory networks. We identify genomic sequences that are targeted by islet transcription factors to drive islet-specific gene activity and show that most such sequences reside in clusters of enhancers that form physical three-dimensional chromatin domains. We find that sequence variants associated with type 2 diabetes and fasting glycemia are enriched in these clustered islet enhancers and identify trait-associated variants that disrupt DNA binding and islet enhancer activity. Our studies illustrate how islet transcription factors interact functionally with the epigenome and provide systematic evidence that the dysregulation of islet enhancers is relevant to the mechanisms underlying type 2 diabetes.

  • Base Sequence
  • Chromatin/genetics/metabolism
  • Chromatin Immunoprecipitation
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2/genetics/metabolism
  • Electrophoretic Mobility Shift Assay
  • Enhancer Elements, Genetic/genetics
  • Formaldehyde
  • Gene Expression Regulation/genetics
  • Gene Regulatory Networks/genetics
  • Genome-Wide Association Study
  • Humans
  • Islets of Langerhans/metabolism
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Sequence Analysis, RNA
  • Transcription Factors/genetics/metabolism
  • Web Browser
Citation (ISO format)
PASQUALI, Lorenzo et al. Pancreatic islet enhancer clusters enriched in type 2 diabetes risk-associated variants. In: Nature genetics, 2014, vol. 46, n° 2, p. 136–143. doi: 10.1038/ng.2870
Main files (1)
Article (Published version)
ISSN of the journal1061-4036

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