Scientists Discover 13 New Gene Variants Linked to Heart DiseaseFeatured News, Health Tuesday, March 8th, 2011
Scientists say that people who are predisposed to heart disease share some genes, and researchers have discovered 13 new gene variants that increase a person’s risk of developing such conditions.
This is an important step in finding new ways to treat heart afflictions such as coronary artery disease, because it provides some insight into the way they develop. The study also claims that mapping someone’s profile of genetic variants for heart problems as part of routine clinical care could be important for designing a personalized treatment for the patient.
“With such information we should be able to better identify people at high risk early on in life and quickly take the steps to neutralize that excess risk,” said Dr. Themistocles Assimes of Stanford University School of Medicine in the United States, one of the researchers who worked on the study. “Although we are inching closer to that day, we will probably need to reliably identify many more variants…over the next few years before it becomes useful to perform this genetic profiling in a doctor’s office.”
Cardiovascular diseases are the most common cause of death in the world, killing 17.1 million people each year.
Researchers said their findings showed that of the total of 23 variants now known, seven are linked with levels of “bad” or LDL cholesterol and one is linked with hypertension, or high blood pressure – both known risk factors for heart disease.
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