Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Early heart disease in parents linked to thicker artery walls in offspring

23.07.2003


If your parents had coronary heart disease before age 60, the walls of your neck arteries are more likely to be thicker, putting you at higher risk of heart disease, too, researchers report in today´s rapid access issue of Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.



Compared with people with no parental history of early-onset coronary heart disease (CHD), those with at least one parent who had a heart attack or other coronary event such as chest pain before age 60, had thicker walls in the large carotid arteries of the neck that lead to the brain, researchers found. Thicker carotid artery walls are associated with a greater degree of atherosclerotic plaque.

The study investigated the symptomless thickening of carotid arteries called subclinical atherosclerosis.


"Studies have shown that subclinical atherosclerosis, as assessed by increased thickness of the carotid artery wall, is directly predictive of an increased risk of heart attack or stroke," says principal investigator Christopher J. O´Donnell, M.D., M.P.H., associate director of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute´s Framingham Heart Study.

The investigators studied a subset of men and women enrolled in the Framingham Offspring Study, a study of 5,124 offspring (and their spouses) of the original participants in the Framingham Heart Study. In this analysis, the researchers studied 1,662 men and women, average age 57, whose biological parents were both in the original Framingham study. Between 1995 and 1998, the offspring underwent carotid ultrasound imaging to measure their carotid walls. This noninvasive imaging technique detects vascular disease before symptoms are present.

O´Donnell notes that many previous studies investigating family history relied on the offspring´s reports to determine if parents had heart disease. This introduces the possibility of recall bias, as people with a personal history of heart disease may be more cognizant of their parents´ cardiovascular history, he explains. In the Framingham studies, researchers collected information about heart disease in a prospective fashion, with both the parents and children undergoing examinations every few years – the parents since 1948, the offspring since 1971.

The study showed that at any age, the average vessel wall thickness of the internal carotid arteries was greater in people with at least one parent who developed CHD before age 60, compared with those without a parental history of early-onset CHD.

"The association holds true for both men and women and is significant even after adjustment for other strong risk factors for atherosclerosis such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol," adds Thomas J. Wang, M.D. a Framingham Heart Study researcher and the study´s lead author.

In men, the average thickness, after adjustment, was 1.12 millimeters (mm) in the group in which at least one parent developed premature CHD, compared with 1.05 mm in the group in which neither parent had premature CHD. In women, the values were 0.92 mm for those with a parental history of premature CHD and 0.85 mm for those without it.

"The findings add to multiple studies recognizing that parental history of coronary heart disease is a risk factor for clinical disease and should be taken seriously," Wang says. "These data support guidelines saying that more rigorous preventive measures should be undertaken if an individual has a family history of heart disease."

"The fact that the association between artery wall thickness and premature parental coronary heart disease remains significant even after adjustment for traditional risk factors suggests that there are genetic causes to subclinical atherosclerosis that go beyond traditional risk factors," he says. "Our logical next step is to identify the mechanisms - including specific genes - underlying this connection between the familial clustering of early-onset heart disease and increased vessel wall thickness. The goal is to find new and effective ways to predict and prevent heart disease and stroke at an early age."

Carole Bullock | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.americanheart.org

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Organ-on-a-chip mimics heart's biomechanical properties
23.02.2017 | Vanderbilt University

nachricht Researchers identify cause of hereditary skeletal muscle disorder
22.02.2017 | Klinikum der Universität München

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Stingless bees have their nests protected by soldiers

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

New risk factors for anxiety disorders

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

MWC 2017: 5G Capital Berlin

24.02.2017 | Trade Fair News

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>