Genetic Variability in Molecular Responses to Chemical Exposure

Part of the Experientia Supplementum book series (EXS, volume 101)


Individuals differ in their response to environmental exposures. In the following, we describe examples and paradigms of studying heritable differences in response to exposure—commonly known as “gene–environment interaction” or “ecogenetics”—and their relation to disease etiology and susceptibility. Our discussion is framed in three parts. In the first, we describe replicated examples of studies that have typified the field, single genetic variant, and exposure associations to disease. Second, we describe how studies have scaled up search for interaction using genome-wide measurement modalities, bioinformatics, and model organisms. Finally, we discuss a more comprehensive representation of chemical exposures as the “envirome” and how we may use the envirome to examine interplay between genetics and the environment.


Gene–environment interactions Pharmacogenetics Ecogenetics Single nucleotide polymorphism (Non-)synonymous variant Phase I/II biotransformation Paraoxonase Epigenetic variant Genome-wide association study Gene–environment-wide interaction study Environment-wide association study Comparative Toxicogenomics Database Systems genetics Envirome Toxome 



C.J.P. was funded by the National Library of Medicine (T15 LM 007033).


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© Springer Basel AG 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of MedicineStanford UniversityStanfordUSA

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