Here, we investigated the genetics of weighted functional brain network graph theory measures from 18,445 participants of the UK Biobank (44-80 years). The eighteen measures studied showed low heritability (mean h = 0.12) and were highly genetically correlated. One genome-wide significant locus was associated with strength of somatomotor and limbic networks. These intergenic variants were located near the PAX8 gene on chromosome 2. Gene-based analyses identified five significantly associated genes for five of the network measures, which have been implicated in sleep duration, neuronal differentiation/development, cancer, and susceptibility to neurodegenerative diseases. Further analysis found that somatomotor network strength was phenotypically associated with sleep duration and insomnia. Single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) and gene level associations with functional network measures were identified, which may help uncover novel biological pathways relevant to human brain functional network integrity and related disorders that affect it.
© 2021. The Author(s).