Rheumatoid arthritis is a common autoimmune disease characterized by chronic inflammation. We report a meta-analysis of genome-wide association studies (GWAS) in a Japanese population including 4,074 individuals with rheumatoid arthritis (cases) and 16,891 controls, followed by a replication in 5,277 rheumatoid arthritis cases and 21,684 controls. Our study identified nine loci newly associated with rheumatoid arthritis at a threshold of P < 5.0 × 10 -8, including B3GNT2, ANXA3, CSF2, CD83, NFKBIE, ARID5B, PDE2A-ARAP1, PLD4 and PTPN2. ANXA3 was also associated with susceptibility to systemic lupus erythematosus (P = 0.0040), and B3GNT2 and ARID5B were associated with Graves′ disease (P = 3.5 × 10 -4 and 2.9 × 10 -4, respectively). We conducted a multi-ancestry comparative analysis with a previous meta-analysis in individuals of European descent (5,539 rheumatoid arthritis cases and 20,169 controls). This provided evidence of shared genetic risks of rheumatoid arthritis between the populations.
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