Uterine leiomyoma is one of the most common gynaecologic benign tumours, but its genetic basis remains largely unknown. Six previous GWAS identified 33 genetic factors in total. Here, we performed a two-staged GWAS using 13,746 cases and 70,316 controls from the Japanese population, followed by a replication analysis using 3,483 cases and 4,795 controls. The analysis identified 9 significant loci, including a novel locus on 12q23.2 (rs17033114, P = 6.12 × 10−25 with an OR of 1.177 (1.141-1.213), LINC00485). Subgroup analysis indicated that 5 loci (3q26.2, 5p15.33, 10q24.33, 11p15.5, 13q14.11) exhibited a statistically significant effect among multiple leiomyomas, and 2 loci (3q26.2, 10q24.33) exhibited a significant effect among submucous leiomyomas. Pleiotropic analysis indicated that all 9 loci were associated with at least one proliferative disease, suggesting the role of these loci in the common neoplastic pathway. Furthermore, the risk T allele of rs2251795 (3q26.2) was associated with longer telomere length in both normal and tumour tissues. Our findings elucidated the significance of genetic factors in the pathogenesis of leiomyoma.
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