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Elsevier, Osteoarthritis and Cartilage, (18), p. S160

DOI: 10.1016/s1063-4584(10)60388-3



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Recommendations for standardization and phenotype definitions in genetic studies of osteoarthritis: the TREAT-OA consortium

This paper is made freely available by the publisher.
This paper is made freely available by the publisher.

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OBJECTIVE: To address the need for standardization of osteoarthritis (OA) phenotypes by examining the effect of heterogeneity among symptomatic (SOA) and radiographic osteoarthritis (ROA) phenotypes. METHODS: Descriptions of OA phenotypes of the 28 studies involved in the TREAT-OA consortium were collected. We investigated whether different OA definitions result in different association results by creating various hip OA definitions in one large population based cohort (the Rotterdam Study-I) and testing those for association with gender, age and BMI using one-way ANOVA. For radiographic OA, we standardized the hip, knee and hand ROA definitions and calculated prevalence's of ROA before and after standardization in 9 cohort studies. This procedure could only be performed in cohort studies and standardization of SOA definitions was not feasible at this moment. RESULTS: In this consortium, all studies with symptomatic OA phenotypes (knee, hip and hand) used a different definition and/or assessment of OA status. For knee, hip and hand radiographic OA 5, 4 and 7 different definitions were used, respectively. Different hip OA definitions do lead to different association results. For example, we showed in the Rotterdam Study-I that hip OA defined as "at least definite JSN and one definite osteophyte" was not associated with gender (p=0.22), but defined as "at least one definite osteophyte" was significantly associated with gender (p=3x10(-9)). Therefore, a standardization process was undertaken for radiographic OA definitions. Before standardization a wide range of ROA prevalence's was observed in the 9 cohorts studied. After standardization the range in prevalence of knee and hip ROA was small. CONCLUSION: Phenotype definitions influence the prevalence of OA and association with clinical variables. ROA phenotypes within the TREAT-OA consortium were standardized to reduce heterogeneity and improve power in future genetics studies.