Differences in genetic and environmental variation in adult BMI by sex, age, time period, and region

An individual-based pooled analysis of 40 twin cohorts

Karri Silventoinen*, Aline Jelenkovic, Reijo Sund, Yoshie Yokoyama, Yoon Mi Hur, Wendy Cozen, Amie E. Hwang, Thomas M. Mack, Chika Honda, Fujio Inui, Yoshinori Iwatani, Mikio Watanabe, Rie Tomizawa, Kirsi H. Pietilainen, Aila Rissanen, Sisira H. Siribaddana, Matthew Hotopf, Athula Sumathipala, Fruhling Rijsdijk, Qihua Tan & 82 others Dongfeng Zhang, Zengchang Pang, Maarit Piirtola, Sari Aaltonen, Sevgi Y. Oncel, Fazil Aliev, Esther Rebato, Jacob B. Hjelmborg, Kaare Christensen, Axel Skytthe, Kirsten O. Kyvik, Judy L. Silberg, Lindon J. Eaves, Tessa L. Cutler, Juan R. Ordonana, Juan F. Sanchez-Romera, Lucia Colodro-Conde, Yun Mi Song, Sarah Yang, Kayoung Lee, Carol E. Franz, William S. Kremen, Michael J. Lyons, Andreas Busjahn, Tracy L. Nelson, Keith E. Whitfield, Christian Kandler, Kerry L. Jang, Margaret Gatz, David A. Butler, Maria A. Stazi, Corrado Fagnani, Cristina D'Ippolito, Glen E. Duncan, Dedra Buchwald, Nicholas G. Martin, Sarah E. Medland, Grant W. Montgomery, Hoe Uk Jeong, Gary E. Swan, Ruth Krasnow, Patrik K.E. Magnusson, Nancy L. Pedersen, Anna K. Dahl Aslan, Tom A. McAdams, Thalia C. Eley, Alice M. Gregory, Per Tynelius, Laura A. Baker, Catherine Tuvblad, Gombojav Bayasgalan, Danshiitsoodol Narandalai, Timothy D. Spector, Massimo Mangino, Genevieve Lachance, S. Alexandra Burt, Kelly L. Klump, Jennifer R. Harris, Ingunn Brandt, Thomas S. Nilsen, Robert F. Krueger, Matt McGue, Shandell Pahlen, Robin P. Corley, Brooke M. Huibregtse, Meike Bartels, Catharina E.M. Van Beijsterveldt, Gonneke Willemsen, Jack H. Goldberg, F Rasmussen, Adam D. Tarnoki, David L. Tarnoki, Catherine A. Derom, Robert F. Vlietinck, Ruth J.F. Loos, John L. Hopper, Joohon Sung, Hermine H. Maes, Eric Turkheimer, Dorret I. Boomsma, Thorkild I.A. Sørensen, Jaakko Kaprio

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Background: Genes and the environment contribute to variation in adult body mass index [BMI (in kg/m(2))], but factors modifying these variance components are poorly understood. Objective: We analyzed genetic and environmental variation in BMI between men and women from young adulthood to old age from the 1940s to the 2000s and between cultural-geographic regions representing high (North America and Australia), moderate (Europe), and low (East Asia) prevalence of obesity. Design: We used genetic structural equation modeling to analyze BMI in twins >= 20 y of age from 40 cohorts representing 20 countries (140,379 complete twin pairs). Results: The heritability of BMI decreased from 0.77 (95% CI: 0.77, 0.78) and 0.75 (95% CI: 0.74, 0.75) in men and women 2029 y of age to 0.57 (95% CI: 0.54, 0.60) and 0.59 (95% CI: 0.53, 0.65) in men 70-79 y of age and women 80 y of age, respectively. The relative influence of unique environmental factors correspondingly increased. Differences in the sets of genes affecting BMI in men and women increased from 20-29 to 60-69 y of age. Mean BMI and variances in BMI increased from the 1940s to the 2000s and were greatest in North America and Australia, followed by Europe and East Asia. However, heritability estimates were largely similar over measurement years and between regions. There was no evidence of environmental factors shared by co-twins affecting BMI. Conclusions: The heritability of BMI decreased and differences in the sets of genes affecting BMI in men and women increased from young adulthood to old age. The heritability of BMI was largely similar between cultural-geographic regions and measurement years, despite large differences in mean BMI and variances in BMI. Our results show a strong influence of genetic factors on BMI, especially in early adulthood, regardless of the obesity level in the population.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Volume106
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)457-466
ISSN0002-9165
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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Far East
North America
Body Mass Index
Population

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Silventoinen, Karri ; Jelenkovic, Aline ; Sund, Reijo ; Yokoyama, Yoshie ; Hur, Yoon Mi ; Cozen, Wendy ; Hwang, Amie E. ; Mack, Thomas M. ; Honda, Chika ; Inui, Fujio ; Iwatani, Yoshinori ; Watanabe, Mikio ; Tomizawa, Rie ; Pietilainen, Kirsi H. ; Rissanen, Aila ; Siribaddana, Sisira H. ; Hotopf, Matthew ; Sumathipala, Athula ; Rijsdijk, Fruhling ; Tan, Qihua ; Zhang, Dongfeng ; Pang, Zengchang ; Piirtola, Maarit ; Aaltonen, Sari ; Oncel, Sevgi Y. ; Aliev, Fazil ; Rebato, Esther ; Hjelmborg, Jacob B. ; Christensen, Kaare ; Skytthe, Axel ; Kyvik, Kirsten O. ; Silberg, Judy L. ; Eaves, Lindon J. ; Cutler, Tessa L. ; Ordonana, Juan R. ; Sanchez-Romera, Juan F. ; Colodro-Conde, Lucia ; Song, Yun Mi ; Yang, Sarah ; Lee, Kayoung ; Franz, Carol E. ; Kremen, William S. ; Lyons, Michael J. ; Busjahn, Andreas ; Nelson, Tracy L. ; Whitfield, Keith E. ; Kandler, Christian ; Jang, Kerry L. ; Gatz, Margaret ; Butler, David A. ; Stazi, Maria A. ; Fagnani, Corrado ; D'Ippolito, Cristina ; Duncan, Glen E. ; Buchwald, Dedra ; Martin, Nicholas G. ; Medland, Sarah E. ; Montgomery, Grant W. ; Jeong, Hoe Uk ; Swan, Gary E. ; Krasnow, Ruth ; Magnusson, Patrik K.E. ; Pedersen, Nancy L. ; Dahl Aslan, Anna K. ; McAdams, Tom A. ; Eley, Thalia C. ; Gregory, Alice M. ; Tynelius, Per ; Baker, Laura A. ; Tuvblad, Catherine ; Bayasgalan, Gombojav ; Narandalai, Danshiitsoodol ; Spector, Timothy D. ; Mangino, Massimo ; Lachance, Genevieve ; Burt, S. Alexandra ; Klump, Kelly L. ; Harris, Jennifer R. ; Brandt, Ingunn ; Nilsen, Thomas S. ; Krueger, Robert F. ; McGue, Matt ; Pahlen, Shandell ; Corley, Robin P. ; Huibregtse, Brooke M. ; Bartels, Meike ; Van Beijsterveldt, Catharina E.M. ; Willemsen, Gonneke ; Goldberg, Jack H. ; Rasmussen, F ; Tarnoki, Adam D. ; Tarnoki, David L. ; Derom, Catherine A. ; Vlietinck, Robert F. ; Loos, Ruth J.F. ; Hopper, John L. ; Sung, Joohon ; Maes, Hermine H. ; Turkheimer, Eric ; Boomsma, Dorret I. ; Sørensen, Thorkild I.A. ; Kaprio, Jaakko. / Differences in genetic and environmental variation in adult BMI by sex, age, time period, and region : An individual-based pooled analysis of 40 twin cohorts. In: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2017 ; Vol. 106, No. 2. pp. 457-466.
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title = "Differences in genetic and environmental variation in adult BMI by sex, age, time period, and region: An individual-based pooled analysis of 40 twin cohorts",
abstract = "Background: Genes and the environment contribute to variation in adult body mass index [BMI (in kg/m(2))], but factors modifying these variance components are poorly understood. Objective: We analyzed genetic and environmental variation in BMI between men and women from young adulthood to old age from the 1940s to the 2000s and between cultural-geographic regions representing high (North America and Australia), moderate (Europe), and low (East Asia) prevalence of obesity. Design: We used genetic structural equation modeling to analyze BMI in twins >= 20 y of age from 40 cohorts representing 20 countries (140,379 complete twin pairs). Results: The heritability of BMI decreased from 0.77 (95{\%} CI: 0.77, 0.78) and 0.75 (95{\%} CI: 0.74, 0.75) in men and women 2029 y of age to 0.57 (95{\%} CI: 0.54, 0.60) and 0.59 (95{\%} CI: 0.53, 0.65) in men 70-79 y of age and women 80 y of age, respectively. The relative influence of unique environmental factors correspondingly increased. Differences in the sets of genes affecting BMI in men and women increased from 20-29 to 60-69 y of age. Mean BMI and variances in BMI increased from the 1940s to the 2000s and were greatest in North America and Australia, followed by Europe and East Asia. However, heritability estimates were largely similar over measurement years and between regions. There was no evidence of environmental factors shared by co-twins affecting BMI. Conclusions: The heritability of BMI decreased and differences in the sets of genes affecting BMI in men and women increased from young adulthood to old age. The heritability of BMI was largely similar between cultural-geographic regions and measurement years, despite large differences in mean BMI and variances in BMI. Our results show a strong influence of genetic factors on BMI, especially in early adulthood, regardless of the obesity level in the population.",
keywords = "BMI, adults, genetics, twins, international comparisons",
author = "Karri Silventoinen and Aline Jelenkovic and Reijo Sund and Yoshie Yokoyama and Hur, {Yoon Mi} and Wendy Cozen and Hwang, {Amie E.} and Mack, {Thomas M.} and Chika Honda and Fujio Inui and Yoshinori Iwatani and Mikio Watanabe and Rie Tomizawa and Pietilainen, {Kirsi H.} and Aila Rissanen and Siribaddana, {Sisira H.} and Matthew Hotopf and Athula Sumathipala and Fruhling Rijsdijk and Qihua Tan and Dongfeng Zhang and Zengchang Pang and Maarit Piirtola and Sari Aaltonen and Oncel, {Sevgi Y.} and Fazil Aliev and Esther Rebato and Hjelmborg, {Jacob B.} and Kaare Christensen and Axel Skytthe and Kyvik, {Kirsten O.} and Silberg, {Judy L.} and Eaves, {Lindon J.} and Cutler, {Tessa L.} and Ordonana, {Juan R.} and Sanchez-Romera, {Juan F.} and Lucia Colodro-Conde and Song, {Yun Mi} and Sarah Yang and Kayoung Lee and Franz, {Carol E.} and Kremen, {William S.} and Lyons, {Michael J.} and Andreas Busjahn and Nelson, {Tracy L.} and Whitfield, {Keith E.} and Christian Kandler and Jang, {Kerry L.} and Margaret Gatz and Butler, {David A.} and Stazi, {Maria A.} and Corrado Fagnani and Cristina D'Ippolito and Duncan, {Glen E.} and Dedra Buchwald and Martin, {Nicholas G.} and Medland, {Sarah E.} and Montgomery, {Grant W.} and Jeong, {Hoe Uk} and Swan, {Gary E.} and Ruth Krasnow and Magnusson, {Patrik K.E.} and Pedersen, {Nancy L.} and {Dahl Aslan}, {Anna K.} and McAdams, {Tom A.} and Eley, {Thalia C.} and Gregory, {Alice M.} and Per Tynelius and Baker, {Laura A.} and Catherine Tuvblad and Gombojav Bayasgalan and Danshiitsoodol Narandalai and Spector, {Timothy D.} and Massimo Mangino and Genevieve Lachance and Burt, {S. Alexandra} and Klump, {Kelly L.} and Harris, {Jennifer R.} and Ingunn Brandt and Nilsen, {Thomas S.} and Krueger, {Robert F.} and Matt McGue and Shandell Pahlen and Corley, {Robin P.} and Huibregtse, {Brooke M.} and Meike Bartels and {Van Beijsterveldt}, {Catharina E.M.} and Gonneke Willemsen and Goldberg, {Jack H.} and F Rasmussen and Tarnoki, {Adam D.} and Tarnoki, {David L.} and Derom, {Catherine A.} and Vlietinck, {Robert F.} and Loos, {Ruth J.F.} and Hopper, {John L.} and Joohon Sung and Maes, {Hermine H.} and Eric Turkheimer and Boomsma, {Dorret I.} and S{\o}rensen, {Thorkild I.A.} and Jaakko Kaprio",
year = "2017",
doi = "10.3945/ajcn.117.153643",
language = "English",
volume = "106",
pages = "457--466",
journal = "The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition",
issn = "0002-9165",
publisher = "AMER SOC NUTRITION-ASN",
number = "2",

}

Silventoinen, K, Jelenkovic, A, Sund, R, Yokoyama, Y, Hur, YM, Cozen, W, Hwang, AE, Mack, TM, Honda, C, Inui, F, Iwatani, Y, Watanabe, M, Tomizawa, R, Pietilainen, KH, Rissanen, A, Siribaddana, SH, Hotopf, M, Sumathipala, A, Rijsdijk, F, Tan, Q, Zhang, D, Pang, Z, Piirtola, M, Aaltonen, S, Oncel, SY, Aliev, F, Rebato, E, Hjelmborg, JB, Christensen, K, Skytthe, A, Kyvik, KO, Silberg, JL, Eaves, LJ, Cutler, TL, Ordonana, JR, Sanchez-Romera, JF, Colodro-Conde, L, Song, YM, Yang, S, Lee, K, Franz, CE, Kremen, WS, Lyons, MJ, Busjahn, A, Nelson, TL, Whitfield, KE, Kandler, C, Jang, KL, Gatz, M, Butler, DA, Stazi, MA, Fagnani, C, D'Ippolito, C, Duncan, GE, Buchwald, D, Martin, NG, Medland, SE, Montgomery, GW, Jeong, HU, Swan, GE, Krasnow, R, Magnusson, PKE, Pedersen, NL, Dahl Aslan, AK, McAdams, TA, Eley, TC, Gregory, AM, Tynelius, P, Baker, LA, Tuvblad, C, Bayasgalan, G, Narandalai, D, Spector, TD, Mangino, M, Lachance, G, Burt, SA, Klump, KL, Harris, JR, Brandt, I, Nilsen, TS, Krueger, RF, McGue, M, Pahlen, S, Corley, RP, Huibregtse, BM, Bartels, M, Van Beijsterveldt, CEM, Willemsen, G, Goldberg, JH, Rasmussen, F, Tarnoki, AD, Tarnoki, DL, Derom, CA, Vlietinck, RF, Loos, RJF, Hopper, JL, Sung, J, Maes, HH, Turkheimer, E, Boomsma, DI, Sørensen, TIA & Kaprio, J 2017, 'Differences in genetic and environmental variation in adult BMI by sex, age, time period, and region: An individual-based pooled analysis of 40 twin cohorts', American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, vol. 106, no. 2, pp. 457-466. https://doi.org/10.3945/ajcn.117.153643

Differences in genetic and environmental variation in adult BMI by sex, age, time period, and region : An individual-based pooled analysis of 40 twin cohorts. / Silventoinen, Karri; Jelenkovic, Aline; Sund, Reijo; Yokoyama, Yoshie; Hur, Yoon Mi; Cozen, Wendy; Hwang, Amie E.; Mack, Thomas M.; Honda, Chika; Inui, Fujio; Iwatani, Yoshinori; Watanabe, Mikio; Tomizawa, Rie; Pietilainen, Kirsi H.; Rissanen, Aila; Siribaddana, Sisira H.; Hotopf, Matthew; Sumathipala, Athula; Rijsdijk, Fruhling; Tan, Qihua; Zhang, Dongfeng; Pang, Zengchang; Piirtola, Maarit; Aaltonen, Sari; Oncel, Sevgi Y.; Aliev, Fazil; Rebato, Esther; Hjelmborg, Jacob B.; Christensen, Kaare; Skytthe, Axel; Kyvik, Kirsten O.; Silberg, Judy L.; Eaves, Lindon J.; Cutler, Tessa L.; Ordonana, Juan R.; Sanchez-Romera, Juan F.; Colodro-Conde, Lucia; Song, Yun Mi; Yang, Sarah; Lee, Kayoung; Franz, Carol E.; Kremen, William S.; Lyons, Michael J.; Busjahn, Andreas; Nelson, Tracy L.; Whitfield, Keith E.; Kandler, Christian; Jang, Kerry L.; Gatz, Margaret; Butler, David A.; Stazi, Maria A.; Fagnani, Corrado; D'Ippolito, Cristina; Duncan, Glen E.; Buchwald, Dedra; Martin, Nicholas G.; Medland, Sarah E.; Montgomery, Grant W.; Jeong, Hoe Uk; Swan, Gary E.; Krasnow, Ruth; Magnusson, Patrik K.E.; Pedersen, Nancy L.; Dahl Aslan, Anna K.; McAdams, Tom A.; Eley, Thalia C.; Gregory, Alice M.; Tynelius, Per; Baker, Laura A.; Tuvblad, Catherine; Bayasgalan, Gombojav; Narandalai, Danshiitsoodol; Spector, Timothy D.; Mangino, Massimo; Lachance, Genevieve; Burt, S. Alexandra; Klump, Kelly L.; Harris, Jennifer R.; Brandt, Ingunn; Nilsen, Thomas S.; Krueger, Robert F.; McGue, Matt; Pahlen, Shandell; Corley, Robin P.; Huibregtse, Brooke M.; Bartels, Meike; Van Beijsterveldt, Catharina E.M.; Willemsen, Gonneke; Goldberg, Jack H.; Rasmussen, F; Tarnoki, Adam D.; Tarnoki, David L.; Derom, Catherine A.; Vlietinck, Robert F.; Loos, Ruth J.F.; Hopper, John L.; Sung, Joohon; Maes, Hermine H.; Turkheimer, Eric; Boomsma, Dorret I.; Sørensen, Thorkild I.A.; Kaprio, Jaakko.

In: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 106, No. 2, 2017, p. 457-466.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Differences in genetic and environmental variation in adult BMI by sex, age, time period, and region

T2 - An individual-based pooled analysis of 40 twin cohorts

AU - Silventoinen, Karri

AU - Jelenkovic, Aline

AU - Sund, Reijo

AU - Yokoyama, Yoshie

AU - Hur, Yoon Mi

AU - Cozen, Wendy

AU - Hwang, Amie E.

AU - Mack, Thomas M.

AU - Honda, Chika

AU - Inui, Fujio

AU - Iwatani, Yoshinori

AU - Watanabe, Mikio

AU - Tomizawa, Rie

AU - Pietilainen, Kirsi H.

AU - Rissanen, Aila

AU - Siribaddana, Sisira H.

AU - Hotopf, Matthew

AU - Sumathipala, Athula

AU - Rijsdijk, Fruhling

AU - Tan, Qihua

AU - Zhang, Dongfeng

AU - Pang, Zengchang

AU - Piirtola, Maarit

AU - Aaltonen, Sari

AU - Oncel, Sevgi Y.

AU - Aliev, Fazil

AU - Rebato, Esther

AU - Hjelmborg, Jacob B.

AU - Christensen, Kaare

AU - Skytthe, Axel

AU - Kyvik, Kirsten O.

AU - Silberg, Judy L.

AU - Eaves, Lindon J.

AU - Cutler, Tessa L.

AU - Ordonana, Juan R.

AU - Sanchez-Romera, Juan F.

AU - Colodro-Conde, Lucia

AU - Song, Yun Mi

AU - Yang, Sarah

AU - Lee, Kayoung

AU - Franz, Carol E.

AU - Kremen, William S.

AU - Lyons, Michael J.

AU - Busjahn, Andreas

AU - Nelson, Tracy L.

AU - Whitfield, Keith E.

AU - Kandler, Christian

AU - Jang, Kerry L.

AU - Gatz, Margaret

AU - Butler, David A.

AU - Stazi, Maria A.

AU - Fagnani, Corrado

AU - D'Ippolito, Cristina

AU - Duncan, Glen E.

AU - Buchwald, Dedra

AU - Martin, Nicholas G.

AU - Medland, Sarah E.

AU - Montgomery, Grant W.

AU - Jeong, Hoe Uk

AU - Swan, Gary E.

AU - Krasnow, Ruth

AU - Magnusson, Patrik K.E.

AU - Pedersen, Nancy L.

AU - Dahl Aslan, Anna K.

AU - McAdams, Tom A.

AU - Eley, Thalia C.

AU - Gregory, Alice M.

AU - Tynelius, Per

AU - Baker, Laura A.

AU - Tuvblad, Catherine

AU - Bayasgalan, Gombojav

AU - Narandalai, Danshiitsoodol

AU - Spector, Timothy D.

AU - Mangino, Massimo

AU - Lachance, Genevieve

AU - Burt, S. Alexandra

AU - Klump, Kelly L.

AU - Harris, Jennifer R.

AU - Brandt, Ingunn

AU - Nilsen, Thomas S.

AU - Krueger, Robert F.

AU - McGue, Matt

AU - Pahlen, Shandell

AU - Corley, Robin P.

AU - Huibregtse, Brooke M.

AU - Bartels, Meike

AU - Van Beijsterveldt, Catharina E.M.

AU - Willemsen, Gonneke

AU - Goldberg, Jack H.

AU - Rasmussen, F

AU - Tarnoki, Adam D.

AU - Tarnoki, David L.

AU - Derom, Catherine A.

AU - Vlietinck, Robert F.

AU - Loos, Ruth J.F.

AU - Hopper, John L.

AU - Sung, Joohon

AU - Maes, Hermine H.

AU - Turkheimer, Eric

AU - Boomsma, Dorret I.

AU - Sørensen, Thorkild I.A.

AU - Kaprio, Jaakko

PY - 2017

Y1 - 2017

N2 - Background: Genes and the environment contribute to variation in adult body mass index [BMI (in kg/m(2))], but factors modifying these variance components are poorly understood. Objective: We analyzed genetic and environmental variation in BMI between men and women from young adulthood to old age from the 1940s to the 2000s and between cultural-geographic regions representing high (North America and Australia), moderate (Europe), and low (East Asia) prevalence of obesity. Design: We used genetic structural equation modeling to analyze BMI in twins >= 20 y of age from 40 cohorts representing 20 countries (140,379 complete twin pairs). Results: The heritability of BMI decreased from 0.77 (95% CI: 0.77, 0.78) and 0.75 (95% CI: 0.74, 0.75) in men and women 2029 y of age to 0.57 (95% CI: 0.54, 0.60) and 0.59 (95% CI: 0.53, 0.65) in men 70-79 y of age and women 80 y of age, respectively. The relative influence of unique environmental factors correspondingly increased. Differences in the sets of genes affecting BMI in men and women increased from 20-29 to 60-69 y of age. Mean BMI and variances in BMI increased from the 1940s to the 2000s and were greatest in North America and Australia, followed by Europe and East Asia. However, heritability estimates were largely similar over measurement years and between regions. There was no evidence of environmental factors shared by co-twins affecting BMI. Conclusions: The heritability of BMI decreased and differences in the sets of genes affecting BMI in men and women increased from young adulthood to old age. The heritability of BMI was largely similar between cultural-geographic regions and measurement years, despite large differences in mean BMI and variances in BMI. Our results show a strong influence of genetic factors on BMI, especially in early adulthood, regardless of the obesity level in the population.

AB - Background: Genes and the environment contribute to variation in adult body mass index [BMI (in kg/m(2))], but factors modifying these variance components are poorly understood. Objective: We analyzed genetic and environmental variation in BMI between men and women from young adulthood to old age from the 1940s to the 2000s and between cultural-geographic regions representing high (North America and Australia), moderate (Europe), and low (East Asia) prevalence of obesity. Design: We used genetic structural equation modeling to analyze BMI in twins >= 20 y of age from 40 cohorts representing 20 countries (140,379 complete twin pairs). Results: The heritability of BMI decreased from 0.77 (95% CI: 0.77, 0.78) and 0.75 (95% CI: 0.74, 0.75) in men and women 2029 y of age to 0.57 (95% CI: 0.54, 0.60) and 0.59 (95% CI: 0.53, 0.65) in men 70-79 y of age and women 80 y of age, respectively. The relative influence of unique environmental factors correspondingly increased. Differences in the sets of genes affecting BMI in men and women increased from 20-29 to 60-69 y of age. Mean BMI and variances in BMI increased from the 1940s to the 2000s and were greatest in North America and Australia, followed by Europe and East Asia. However, heritability estimates were largely similar over measurement years and between regions. There was no evidence of environmental factors shared by co-twins affecting BMI. Conclusions: The heritability of BMI decreased and differences in the sets of genes affecting BMI in men and women increased from young adulthood to old age. The heritability of BMI was largely similar between cultural-geographic regions and measurement years, despite large differences in mean BMI and variances in BMI. Our results show a strong influence of genetic factors on BMI, especially in early adulthood, regardless of the obesity level in the population.

KW - BMI

KW - adults

KW - genetics

KW - twins

KW - international comparisons

U2 - 10.3945/ajcn.117.153643

DO - 10.3945/ajcn.117.153643

M3 - Journal article

VL - 106

SP - 457

EP - 466

JO - The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

JF - The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

SN - 0002-9165

IS - 2

ER -