Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New therapeutic target for coronary heart disease

Date:
February 14, 2013
Source:
Queen Mary, University of London
Summary:
Scientists investigating how certain genes affect an individual's risk of developing coronary heart disease have identified a new therapeutic target, according to new research.

Scientists investigating how certain genes affect an individual's risk of developing coronary heart disease have identified a new therapeutic target, according to research published in the American Journal of Human Genetics.

They have discovered that an enzyme known as ADAMTS7 plays a crucial role in the build-up of cells in the coronary arteries which lead to coronary heart disease.

Coronary heart disease (also known as coronary artery disease) is the nation's biggest killer, with around 94,000 deaths in the UK each year. The condition happens when the blood supply to the heart is blocked by a build-up of fatty deposits -- called atherosclerotic plaques -- within the walls of one or more of the coronary arteries.

Lifestyle factors -- including smoking, a bad diet and lack of exercise -- contribute to an individual's risk of heart disease, but a number of genes have also been found to play a role.

The research was led by Shu Ye, Professor of Molecular Medicine and Genetics at Queen Mary, University of London. Professor Ye said: "Recent studies have identified a number of genetic regions that are associated with coronary heart disease. However, to translate these findings into new therapeutics which could benefit patients, we need to understand how these genetic variants are influencing the disease."

In this study the scientists focused on a genetic region associated with coronary heart disease which contained the ADAMTS7 gene. This gene governs the production of an enzyme, also called ADAMTS7, which breaks down a structural protein called thrombospondin-5 in the arterial wall. This breakdown allows cells in the wall of the artery to move about more freely, and to migrate into the atherosclerotic plaques, making them larger and the affected artery narrower.

By analysing genetic data from an earlier study which involved 787 people in Italy, together with ultrasound scans of their arteries, the researchers found that a particular variant of the ADAMTS7 gene was associated with a 50 per cent reduction in risk of atherosclerosis.

Professor Ye said: "Through analysing arterial cells from 18 individuals, we found that this ADAMTS7 gene variant reduces the ability of the ADAMTS7 enzyme to break down the structural protein thrombospondin-5. As a result, arterial cells are less able to migrate and consequently we found that individuals carrying this genetic variant are less likely to develop atherosclerotic plaques and, even if they do, the plaques tend to be smaller.

"Further research is needed but this indicates that ADAMTS7 would be a promising target against which new medicines could be designed to act."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Queen Mary, University of London. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Xiangyuan Pu, Qingzhong Xiao, Stefan Kiechl, Kenneth Chan, FuLiang Ng, Shivani Gor, RobinN. Poston, Changcun Fang, Ashish Patel, EceC. Senver, Sue Shaw-Hawkins, Johann Willeit, Chuanju Liu, Jianhua Zhu, ArthurT. Tucker, Qingbo Xu, MarkJ. Caulfield, Shu Ye. ADAMTS7 Cleavage and Vascular Smooth Muscle Cell Migration Is Affected by a Coronary-Artery-Disease-Associated Variant. The American Journal of Human Genetics, 2013; DOI: 10.1016/j.ajhg.2013.01.012

Cite This Page:

Queen Mary, University of London. "New therapeutic target for coronary heart disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 February 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130214141804.htm>.
Queen Mary, University of London. (2013, February 14). New therapeutic target for coronary heart disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130214141804.htm
Queen Mary, University of London. "New therapeutic target for coronary heart disease." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130214141804.htm (accessed September 22, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, September 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Sierra Leone in Lockdown to Control Ebola

Sierra Leone in Lockdown to Control Ebola

AP (Sep. 21, 2014) Sierra Leone residents remained in lockdown on Saturday as part of a massive effort to confine millions of people to their homes in a bid to stem the biggest Ebola outbreak in history. (Sept. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone's Nationwide Ebola Curfew Underway

Sierra Leone's Nationwide Ebola Curfew Underway

Newsy (Sep. 20, 2014) Sierra Leone is locked down as aid workers and volunteers look for new cases of Ebola. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Changes Found In Brain After One Dose Of Antidepressants

Changes Found In Brain After One Dose Of Antidepressants

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) A study suggest antidepressants can kick in much sooner than previously thought. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) The study found elderly people are much more likely to become susceptible to infection than younger adults going though a similar situation. 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