Osteoarthritis (OA) is a common rheumatic disease. The aetiology is not known, although a plethora of biochemical abnormalities within cartilage and bone have been described. Epidemiological data suggest that OA is a complex genetic trait, and some candidate genes have been implicated, including COL2A1, and loci on 1p, 8q and 11q. The phenotype is varied, and determination of heritability confounded by clinical subphenotypes. Furthermore, there is a progressive increase in disease frequency such that age criteria are an important parameter in defining a sample population of OA. A genetic contribution is most evident when onset is at a younger age and appears to influence the type of OA. For example, knee OA in females, and symmetrical distal interphalangeal (DIP) joint disease with Heberden's nodes, are subject to distinct genetic influences. The quoted prevalence of severe hand OA in the 50-59 year age group in Finland is 0.18%.
To map loci linked to DIP joint OA in a Finnish population.