Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Genetic Test Accurate For Salt-related High Blood Pressure

Date:
February 23, 2006
Source:
University of Virginia Health System
Summary:
Researchers led by UVa Health System pathologist Robin Felder, PhD, have demonstrated that looking for several variations of genes that control blood pressure can predict the risk for high blood pressure caused by high levels of salt.

Researchers led by UVa Health System pathologist Robin Felder, Ph.D., have demonstrated that looking for several variations of genes that control blood pressure can predict the risk for high blood pressure caused by high levels of salt. Once it is fully developed, this effective diagnostic test will be the first of its kind, says Dr. Felder, whose work will be published in the Feb. 23 issue of the journal Clinical Chemistry. When a subject had three or more variations in these genes, the new genetic test correctly predicted risk for salt-induced high blood pressure in 94 percent of cases. Health is adversely affected by high salt intake in up to half of Americans.

In a separate finding, two genes at most were necessary to predict with a 78 percent accuracy which people with high blood pressure (hypertension) had a low renin levels, a substance that is currently measured to help establish the diagnosis of salt (sodium chloride) sensitivity. Thus, the researchers found different genetic bases for low renin in the blood and for salt sensitivity. Salt sensitivity is defined as a greater than 10 percent increase in blood pressure following a high-salt meal.

The researchers also determined that the increase in subjects' blood pressure and inability to eliminate excess salt from their systems was directly related to how many variations were found in the participants' salt regulating genes, a phenomenon called a gene dosing effect. The more gene variants, the bigger the health problems.

"A genetic test for high blood pressure and/or salt sensitivity will be instrumental in motivating Americans to adopt heart healthy lifestyles and help to improve their overall health and quality of life," Dr. Felder said. "In addition, because the treatment of hypertension costs the U.S. health system more than $13 billion per year, this test could result in significant cost savings as well."

"Diagnostic genetic tests with this high level of predictive value for hypertension simply don't exist at this time," said Dr. Hironobu Sanada, M.D., Ph.D., Fukushima Medical University , who led the clinical trials of the diagnostic genetic panel with Japanese subjects. Dr. Sanada is a former UVa pathology fellow who studied and worked with Dr. Felder.

Performing extended studies among people with different ethnic origins, the research group hopes to demonstrate the effectiveness of this test in particular among African Americans, who have a higher incidence of salt-sensitive hypertension than other races. While 98 million Americans suffer from either high blood pressure or sensitivity to dietary salt (or both), until now no genetic test had been created that could predict who may develop these diseases. Salt sensitivity, with or without high blood pressure, has the same deleterious consequences as high blood pressure. Left undiagnosed, high blood pressure and/or salt sensitivity can lead to devastating consequences such as stroke, blindness, heart attack and kidney failure.

The studies were conducted by a team of collaborators including Pedro A. Jose, M.D., Ph.D., at Georgetown University School of Medicine (Washington D.C. ), Hironobu Sanada, M.D., Ph.D., Fukushima Medical University (Fukushima , Japan ), and Scott Williams, Ph.D., Vanderbilt University (Nashville , TN ). Funding for these studies was provided in part by a $10.2 million grant from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.

The grant will allow this group of collaborating investigators, including Dr. Robert M. Carey, M.D. (University of Virginia ) to extend their studies on the genetic bases for high blood pressure and salt sensitivity and their mechanisms in subjects from many different ethnic backgrounds, which could influence the predictive value of the diagnostic test. The team's work will examine the normal mechanisms associated with sodium (salt) management by the kidney and how the failure of these mechanisms contributes to high blood pressure.

Dr. Carey will recruit an additional 3,000 volunteers who will receive genetic screens to identify gene variants that contribute to elevated blood pressure. Dr. Jose's research will determine how dopamine receptors and angiotensin II receptors regulate each other. The information from these studies will provide new insights into how hypertension develops, how it can be tested and how it can be treated.

Right now, no definitive diagnostic test exists for salt sensitivity, except for a protocol in which diet is controlled rigorously over a two-week period. "Through these grant funds, we wish to stimulate broader research in the area of cardiovascular disease, hypertension and salt sensitivity," said Dr. Felder. "It's important because cardiovascular diseases, including stroke, account for more disability and death than the next top five causes combined."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Virginia Health System. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Virginia Health System. "Genetic Test Accurate For Salt-related High Blood Pressure." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 February 2006. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/02/060223082643.htm>.
University of Virginia Health System. (2006, February 23). Genetic Test Accurate For Salt-related High Blood Pressure. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/02/060223082643.htm
University of Virginia Health System. "Genetic Test Accurate For Salt-related High Blood Pressure." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/02/060223082643.htm (accessed October 20, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, October 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Microneedle Patch Promises Painless Pricks

Microneedle Patch Promises Painless Pricks

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 18, 2014) Researchers at The National University of Singapore have invented a new microneedle patch that could offer a faster and less painful delivery of drugs such as insulin and painkillers. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Nurse Nina Pham Arrives in Maryland

Raw: Nurse Nina Pham Arrives in Maryland

AP (Oct. 17, 2014) The first nurse to be diagnosed with Ebola at a Dallas hospital walked down the stairs of an executive jet into an ambulance at an airport in Frederick, Maryland, on Thursday. Pham will be treated at the National Institutes of Health. (Oct. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Cruise Ship Returns to US Over Ebola Fears

Raw: Cruise Ship Returns to US Over Ebola Fears

AP (Oct. 17, 2014) A Caribbean cruise ship carrying a Dallas health care worker who is being monitored for signs of the Ebola virus is heading back to Texas, US, after being refused permission to dock in Cozumel, Mexico. (Oct. 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Spanish Govt: Four Suspected Ebola Cases in Spain Test Negative

Spanish Govt: Four Suspected Ebola Cases in Spain Test Negative

AFP (Oct. 17, 2014) All four suspected Ebola cases admitted to hospitals in Spain on Thursday have tested negative for the deadly virus in a first round of tests, the government said Friday. Duration: 00:55 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins