DOI: 10.1002/ajmg.b.32955 ISSN: 1552-4841

Integrative multi‐omics analysis of genomic, epigenomic, and metabolomics data leads to new insights for Attention‐Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

Nikki Hubers, Fiona A. Hagenbeek, René Pool, Sébastien Déjean, Amy C. Harms, Peter J. Roetman, Catharina E. M. van Beijsterveldt, Vassilios Fanos, Erik A. Ehli, Robert R. J. M. Vermeiren, Meike Bartels, Jouke Jan Hottenga, Thomas Hankemeier, Jenny van Dongen, Dorret I. Boomsma
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Genetics (clinical)


The evolving field of multi‐omics combines data and provides methods for simultaneous analysis across several omics levels. Here, we integrated genomics (transmitted and non‐transmitted polygenic scores [PGSs]), epigenomics, and metabolomics data in a multi‐omics framework to identify biomarkers for Attention‐Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and investigated the connections among the three omics levels. We first trained single‐ and next multi‐omics models to differentiate between cases and controls in 596 twins (cases = 14.8%) from the Netherlands Twin Register (NTR) demonstrating reasonable in‐sample prediction through cross‐validation. The multi‐omics model selected 30 PGSs, 143 CpGs, and 90 metabolites. We confirmed previous associations of ADHD with glucocorticoid exposure and the transmembrane protein family TMEM, show that the DNA methylation of the MAD1L1 gene associated with ADHD has a relation with parental smoking behavior, and present novel findings including associations between indirect genetic effects and CpGs of the STAP2 gene. However, out‐of‐sample prediction in NTR participants (N = 258, cases = 14.3%) and in a clinical sample (N = 145, cases = 51%) did not perform well (range misclassification was [0.40, 0.57]). The results highlighted connections between omics levels, with the strongest connections between non‐transmitted PGSs, CpGs, and amino acid levels and show that multi‐omics designs considering interrelated omics levels can help unravel the complex biology underlying ADHD.

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