Mendelian randomization has been suggested as a way to overcome confounding by exploiting the random allocation of alleles from parents to offspring.
In mid-2006, the authors conducted a study of allele frequencies for the lactase (LCT) and taste receptor, type 2, member 38 (TAS2R38) genes, including 634 volunteers recruited (1992-1998) from the Italian branch of the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition. The authors hypothesized that there would be a lower milk intake among carriers of the LCT CC genotype and a different intake of cruciferous vegetables among carriers of the TAS2R38 variant. Overall, the frequency of the LCT T allele was higher in northern Italy than in southern Italy. Food intake was associated with gene variants.
An association was evident for ice cream and LCT variants (p = 0.004); less so for milk intake.
In addition, the TAS2R38 variant showed a geographic gradient and an association with cruciferous vegetable intake.
These results suggest that the LCT and TAS2R38 variants are good candidates for Mendelian randomization studies of cancer and other health outcomes.
JournalAmerican journal of epidemiology
Am J Epidemiol (0002-9262)
American Journal of Epidemiology
Centre for Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention (CPO Piemonte), Turin, Italy.
Am J Epidemiol. 2007 Sep;166(5):576-81
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