Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New predictor of heart disease in African-Americans identified

Date:
May 20, 2010
Source:
University of California - Davis - Health System
Summary:
Researchers have discovered that a blood component linked with inflammation can predict coronary artery disease in African-Americans.

UC Davis researchers have discovered that a blood component linked with inflammation can predict coronary artery disease in African-Americans.

Known as lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A2 (Lp-PLA2), the blood factor is also associated with but does not accurately predict heart-disease risk in Caucasians. The findings are published in the current issue of the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.

"This study suggests that inflammation may be a more important mechanism in heart disease for African-Americans than it is for Caucasians and increases our growing understanding of how heart-disease processes vary in different ethnic groups," said Lars Berglund, senior study author and associate dean for research at the UC Davis School of Medicine. "The more we appreciate such differences, the better we can individualize treatment and prevention approaches."

Lp-PLA2 was recently identified as a marker for the inflammatory processes involved in atherosclerosis. It is considered key to the progression and rupture of fatty plaques that can block coronary arteries and lead to heart attacks. It predominately binds to low-density lipoprotein -- or LDL -- which is a general marker of increased heart-disease risk. Berglund noted, though, that more well-known factors like LDL and high cholesterol cannot provide the whole picture of heart disease.

"There are other important elements of heart disease -- like inflammation -- that need to be better explained," he said.

For the current study, Berglund and his team measured Lp-PLA2 levels in the blood of 336 Caucasians and 224 African-Americans who were about to undergo diagnostic coronary arteriography -- a test used to determine coronary artery disease in high-risk patients -- at two hospitals in New York. Coronary arteriography findings were compared with the amount and activity levels of Lp-PLA2 from each research subject.

During the procedure, contrast dye and X-rays are used to detect narrowed or blocked arteries, indicating the potential for heart attacks.

"Arteriography is highly effective but considered too risky and expensive for general screening," said Berglund. "That is why researchers are always on the lookout for other reliable predictors of heart-attack risk that can be identified with a simple blood test."

The outcomes showed that Lp-PLA2 activity was higher among Caucasians and African-Americans with coronary artery disease. In addition, only in African-Americans was the Lp-PLA2 index found to independently predict coronary artery disease.

Although the test for Lp-PLA2 is widely available, Berglund said it is too soon to recommend widespread testing to affect treatment decisions. The study population was not representative of the general population as all participants already had symptoms of heart disease. Berglund's team plans further studies of Lp-PLA2 and other inflammatory components of the blood in a wider range of patients to get a clearer picture of their roles in predicting heart disease for different ethnic and racial groups. The outcomes of his current study, however, give him hope that African-Americans at high risk for heart disease will one day be treated for inflammation more aggressively and earlier in the disease process.

"This study has helped open the field," said Berglund. "More information will allow us to better tailor therapy to specific patient needs."

In addition to Berglund, other study authors included Erdembileg Anuurad and Byambaa Enhkmaa of UC Davis, Thomas Pearson of the University of Rochester and Zeynep Ozturk of the University of Istanbul.

The study was funded by grants from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, the UC Davis Clinical and Translational Science Center and the American Heart Association.


Story Source:

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


Cite This Page:

University of California - Davis - Health System. "New predictor of heart disease in African-Americans identified." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 May 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100520093038.htm>.
University of California - Davis - Health System. (2010, May 20). New predictor of heart disease in African-Americans identified. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100520093038.htm
University of California - Davis - Health System. "New predictor of heart disease in African-Americans identified." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100520093038.htm (accessed July 24, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Idaho Boy Helps Brother With Disabilities Complete Triathlon

Idaho Boy Helps Brother With Disabilities Complete Triathlon

Newsy (July 23, 2014) An 8-year-old boy helped his younger brother, who has a rare genetic condition that's confined him to a wheelchair, finish a triathlon. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Thousands Who Can't Afford Medical Care Flock to Free US Clinic

Thousands Who Can't Afford Medical Care Flock to Free US Clinic

AFP (July 23, 2014) America may be the world’s richest country, but in terms of healthcare, the World Health Organisation ranks it 37th. Thousands turned out for a free clinic run by "Remote Area Medical" with a visit from the Governor of Virginia. Duration: 2:40 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stone Fruit Listeria Scare Causes Sweeping Recall

Stone Fruit Listeria Scare Causes Sweeping Recall

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The Wawona Packing Company has issued a voluntary recall on the stone fruit it distributes due to a possible Listeria outbreak. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Huge Schizophrenia Study Finds Dozens Of New Genetic Causes

Huge Schizophrenia Study Finds Dozens Of New Genetic Causes

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The 83 new genetic markers could open dozens of new avenues for schizophrenia treatment research. Video provided by Newsy
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:
from the past week

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