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Volume 25, Issue 3 (May 2023) 25, 421–425; 10.4103/aja202261

Genetically predicted insomnia causally increases the risk of erectile dysfunction

Xiong, Yang1,2,*; Zhang, Fu-Xun1,2,*; Zhang, Yang-Chang3; Wu, Chang-Jing1; Qin, Feng1; Yuan, Jiu-Hong1,2,

1Andrology Laboratory, West China Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610041, China

2Department of Urology, West China Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610041, China

3Department of Epidemiology and Health Statistics, School of Public Health and Management, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 401331, China

Correspondence: Dr. JH Yuan (jiuhongyuan2107@163.com)

Received: 18 March 2022; Accepted: 30 June 2022; published online: 05 August 2022


Sleep has attracted extensive attention due to its significance in health. However, its association with erectile dysfunction (ED) is
insufficiently investigated. To investigate the potential causal links between sleep traits (insomnia, sleep duration, and chronotype)
and ED, this study was performed. The single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with insomnia, sleep duration,
and chronotype were retrieved from previous genome-wide association studies (GWAS). A conventional two-sample Mendelian
randomization (MR) was used to estimate the causal links between sleep traits and ED. The summary statistics of ED were from
individuals of European ancestry (6175 cases vs 217 630 controls). As shown by the random effect inverse-variance-weighting (IVW)
estimator, genetically predicted insomnia was causally associated with a 1.15-fold risk of ED (95% confidence interval: 1.07–1.23,
P < 0.001). Sleep duration and morningness were not causally associated with ED, as indicated by the IVW (all P > 0.05). These
findings were consistent with the results of sensitivity analyses. Based on genetic data, this study provides causal evidence that
genetically predicted insomnia increases the risk of ED, whereas sleep duration and chronotype do not.

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Asian Journal of Andrology CN 31-1795/R ISSN 1008-682X  Copyright © 2023  Shanghai Materia Medica, Chinese Academy of Sciences.  All rights reserved.