The Anorexia Nervosa Genetics Initiative (ANGI): overview and methods

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Thornton, Laura M
Munn-Chernoff, Melissa A
Baker, Jessica H
Jureus, Anders
Parker, Richard
Henders, Anjali K
Larsen, Janne T
Petersen, Liselotte
Watson, Hunna J
Yilmaz, Zeynep
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© 2018 Published by Elsevier Inc. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license:
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© 2018 Published by Elsevier Inc.
Background Genetic factors contribute to anorexia nervosa (AN); and the first genome-wide significant locus has been identified. We describe methods and procedures for the Anorexia Nervosa Genetics Initiative (ANGI), an international collaboration designed to rapidly recruit 13,000 individuals with AN and ancestrally matched controls. We present sample characteristics and the utility of an online eating disorder diagnostic questionnaire suitable for large-scale genetic and population research. Methods ANGI recruited from the United States (US), Australia/New Zealand (ANZ), Sweden (SE), and Denmark (DK). Recruitment was via national registers (SE, DK); treatment centers (US, ANZ, SE, DK); and social and traditional media (US, ANZ, SE). All cases had a lifetime AN diagnosis based on DSM-IV or ICD-10 criteria (excluding amenorrhea). Recruited controls had no lifetime history of disordered eating behaviors. To assess the positive and negative predictive validity of the online eating disorder questionnaire (ED100K-v1), 109 women also completed the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV (SCID), Module H. Results Blood samples and clinical information were collected from 13,363 individuals with lifetime AN and from controls. Online diagnostic phenotyping was effective and efficient; the validity of the questionnaire was acceptable. Conclusions Our multi-pronged recruitment approach was highly effective for rapid recruitment and can be used as a model for efforts by other groups. High online presence of individuals with AN rendered the Internet/social media a remarkably effective recruitment tool in some countries. ANGI has substantially augmented Psychiatric Genomics Consortium AN sample collection.
This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license: which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. This author accepted manuscript is made available following 12 month embargo from date of publication (October 2018) in accordance with the publisher’s archiving policy
Social media, Psychiatric genomics consortium, Psychiatric genetics, Genome-wide association, Eating disorders, Anorexia nervosa
Thornton, L. M., Munn-Chernoff, M. A., Baker, J. H., Juréus, A., Parker, R., Henders, A. K., … Bulik, C. M. (2018). The Anorexia Nervosa Genetics Initiative (ANGI): Overview and methods. Contemporary Clinical Trials, 74, 61–69.