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Genetic association studies have identified 210 risk loci for inflammatory bowel disease, which have revealed fundamental aspects of the molecular biology of the disease, including the roles of autophagy and Th17 cell signaling and development. We performed a genome-wide association study of 25,305 individuals, and meta-analyzed with published summary statistics, yielding a total sample size of 59,957 subjects. We identified 26 new genome-wide significant loci, three of which contain integrin genes that encode molecules in pathways identified as important therapeutic targets in inflammatory bowel disease. The associated variants are also correlated with expression changes in response to immune stimulus at two of these genes (ITGA4, ITGB8) and at two previously implicated integrin loci (ITGAL, ICAM1). In all four cases, the stimulus-dependent expression increasing allele also increases disease risk. We applied summary statistic fine-mapping and identified likely causal missense variants in the primary immune deficiency gene PLCG2 and the negative regulator of inflammation, SLAMF8. Our results demonstrate that new common variant associations continue to identify genes and pathways of relevance to therapeutic target identification and prioritization.

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