Team of Greek Scientists Discover Greater Number of Gene Variants on Height

Researchers have pinpointed 83 genetic variants that could affect the height of a person and their findings have been published in “Nature” magazine.

Part of the research team included five Greeks from Genetics Professor Panos Deloukas of Queen Mary University and William Harvey Research Institute. Irene Marouli also of Queen Mary University, who was the original author of the study, Stavroula Kanoni and Ioanna Dalla of the same institute and lastly epidemiologist Photis Drenos of the University College of London.

300 scientists took part in the study in total hailing from the International Consortium of Genetic Investigation of Anthropomorphic Traits (GIANT).

So why study height?

The 83 gene variants discovered account for larger height differences of over 2cm and according to Professor Deloukas the new genetic variants were rare for the population, adding that their impact on human height provided important new knowledge for the growth of the human skeleton. “Now we are in the position to start detecting similar genetic variants that could affect the risks of contracting common diseases like diabetes, cancer, schizophrenia and heart diseases”, he said.