A whole-genome sequenced control population in northern Sweden reveals subregional genetic differences.

Svensson D, Rentoft M, Dahlin AM, Lundholm E, Olason PI, Sjödin A, Nylander C, Melin BS, Trygg J, Johansson E

PLoS ONE 15 (9) e0237721 [2020-09-11; online 2020-09-11]

The number of national reference populations that are whole-genome sequenced are rapidly increasing. Partly driving this development is the fact that genetic disease studies benefit from knowing the genetic variation typical for the geographical area of interest. A whole-genome sequenced Swedish national reference population (n = 1000) has been recently published but with few samples from northern Sweden. In the present study we have whole-genome sequenced a control population (n = 300) (ACpop) from Västerbotten County, a sparsely populated region in northern Sweden previously shown to be genetically different from southern Sweden. The aggregated variant frequencies within ACpop are publicly available (DOI 10.17044/NBIS/G000005) to function as a basic resource in clinical genetics and for genetic studies. Our analysis of ACpop, representing approximately 0.11% of the population in Västerbotten, indicates the presence of a genetic substructure within the county. Furthermore, a demographic analysis showed that the population from which samples were drawn was to a large extent geographically stationary, a finding that was corroborated in the genetic analysis down to the level of municipalities. Including ACpop in the reference population when imputing unknown variants in a Västerbotten cohort resulted in a strong increase in the number of high-confidence imputed variants (up to 81% for variants with minor allele frequency < 5%). ACpop was initially designed for cancer disease studies, but the genetic structure within the cohort will be of general interest for all genetic disease studies in northern Sweden.

Bioinformatics Compute and Storage [Service]

NGI Uppsala (SNP&SEQ Technology Platform) [Service]

National Genomics Infrastructure [Service]

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PubMed 32915809

DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0237721

Crossref 10.1371/journal.pone.0237721

pii: PONE-D-20-06062
pmc: PMC7485808