Genome-wide association studies and Crohn’s disease
The development of genome-wide association scanning (GWAS) has revolutionized the search for genetic loci associated with complex diseases. Crohn’s disease (CD), together with ulcerative colitis, has been a principal beneficiary of this technology with a recent meta-analysis from the International IBD Genetics Consortium increasing the number of confirmed CD susceptibility loci to 71. When one considers that prior to the development of GWAS only three susceptibility loci had been identified, the degree of progress becomes obvious. In this article we will summarize the principal discoveries that have been made in CD genetics and explain how these have contributed to our improved understanding of disease pathogenesis.