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Calcified Tissue International

, Volume 103, Issue 5, pp 546–553 | Cite as

Is There Causal Relationship of Smoking and Alcohol Consumption with Bone Mineral Density? A Mendelian Randomization Study

  • Ran Guo
  • Lang Wu
  • Qin Fu
Original Research

Abstract

Observational studies examining associations of smoking and alcohol consumption with bone mineral density (BMD) have generated inconsistent results and suffer from several methodological limitations. We aim to evaluate whether there are causal associations between smoking, alcohol consumption, and BMD using a Mendelian randomization (MR) design. Genetic variants associated with smoking status (n = 142), no. of cigarettes smoked per day (CPD) (n = 3), smoking initiation (n = 1), and alcohol consumption (n = 6) identified in published genome-wide association studies (GWAS) were used as instruments. Summary statistics data of 32735, 28498, 8143, and 445921 European subjects included in The GEnetic Factors for Osteoporosis Consortium or UK Biobank were used to generate associations of genetically predicted smoking or alcohol consumption with femoral neck (FN-BMD), lumbar spine (LS-BMD), forearm (FA-BMD), and heel BMD, respectively, by using the inverse-variance weighted method. The BMD was measured using either ultrasound (for heel) or Dual-energy X-ray Absorptiometry (for others). In our analyses, smoking status tended to be negatively associated with several types of BMD (heel BMD: β = − 0.053, p = 0.003; FN-BMD: β = − 0.139, p = 0.053; FA-BMD: β = − 0.264, p = 0.077), although the association with LS-BMD was null. Smoking initiation was significantly inversely associated with heel BMD (β = − 0.201, p = 3.60 × 10−8). CPD was associated with a lower FN-BMD (β = − 0.014, p = 0.047) only. There was no clear association of genetically predicted alcohol consumption with BMD. Our study provided some evidence of a potential association between genetically predicted smoking and lower BMD, especially for heel BMD, but not for alcohol consumption. Considering the inconsistent findings with the different types of BMD and limitations of the current work, further studies are needed to better characterize the exact relationship between smoking, alcohol consumption, and BMD.

Keywords

Bone mineral density Smoking Alcohol consumption Association Mendelian randomization Genetic instruments 

Notes

Author Contributions

RG, LW, and QF designed this study. RG and QF performed the catalog and literature search and data extraction with suggestions and help from LW. RG, LW, and QF performed the statistical analyses. All authors contributed to the data interpretation and manuscript writing. QF is responsible for the overall content as the guarantor of the paper.

Funding

This study was supported by the General project for scientific research of Liaoning Provincial Education Department (No. L2015572 for Ran Guo). The sponsors are not involved in study design; in the collection, analysis and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; and in the decision to submit the article for publication.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

Ran Guo, Lang Wu, and Qin Fu declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.

Supplementary material

223_2018_452_MOESM1_ESM.docx (79 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 78 KB)

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of OrthopaedicsShengjing Hospital of China Medical UniversityShenyangPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Division of Epidemiology, Department of Medicine, Vanderbilt Epidemiology CenterVanderbilt University Medical CenterNashvilleUSA

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