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Communications
Translational genomic medicine: common metabolic traits and ancestral components of Mexican Americans
  1. Hui-Qi Qu1,
  2. Quan Li2,
  3. Yang Lu1,
  4. Susan P Fisher-Hoch1,
  5. Joseph B McCormick1
  1. 1The University of Texas School of Public Health, Brownsville Regional Campus, Brownsville, Texas, USA
  2. 2Endocrine Genetics Lab, The McGill University Health Center (Montreal Children's Hospital), Montréal, Québec, Canada
  1. Correspondence to Dr Hui-Qi Qu, Division of Epidemiology, Human Genetics and Environmental Sciences, The University of Texas School of Public Health, Brownsville Regional Campus, Brownsville, Texas, USA; huiqi.qu{at}uth.tmc.edu Dr Joseph B McCormick, Regional Dean and James Steele Professor, University of Texas School of Public Health, Brownsville Regional Campus, Brownsville, Texas, USA; joseph.b.mccormick{at}uth.tmc.edu

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Obesity, type 2 diabetes, hyperlipidaemia, hypertension and liver disease are common metabolic disorders in Mexican Americans, the largest minority population in the US. Mexican Americans are an admixed population with European, Amerindian and African ancestries. Association of ancestral components and these common metabolic disorders is a compelling issue because it may provide significant insight into personalised medicine based on quantitative ethnic information.

It has not been possible to get precise ancestral information for Mexican Americans using questionnaires. Indeed, siblings in the same family may give different ethnic information. Thanks to the impressive progress of human genomics research, genetic ancestral analysis using DNA polymorphism markers offers the opportunity to acquire accurate ancestry/ethnicity data in admixed human populations.1 ,2 Quantitative ancestral information can be readily acquired by genotyping a set of ancestry informative markers (AIMs) across the human genome. The AIMs are comprised of a number of autosomal single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) with substantially different allele frequencies in different ancestral populations. We used this approach to investigate the ancestral components of our community-based Cameron County Hispanic Cohort (CCHC) consisting of Mexican Americans with high rates of obesity, type 2 diabetes, …

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