A group led by Mark J. Caulfield, Queen Mary University of London, has identified 107 regions of DNA linked to hypertension. The discovery could help identify patients most at risk, offering them of early treatment. It will also facilitate the search for new drugs against high blood pressure.
The researchers analyzed 9.8 million genetic variants detected by the genetic material of more than 420,000 Britons. They then compared the results with the blood pressure levels of the subjects. The comparison emerged 107 DNA regions expressed especially in the blood vessels and cardiovascular tissue, spread among those suffering from hypertension. These regions may become a target for new drug treatments, improving the quality of life of a large number of patients.
From the stories of the data, the researchers developed a method to identify those most at risk of stroke and cardiovascular disease. The technique involves a points system, which assigns a more or less high risk score based on blood pressure and genetic predisposition. According to this system, every 10 millimeters of mercury in the blood pressure more, the risk can also go up by over 50%.
The method could help identify those at risk from the earliest years of life. This would allow them to adopt the style of better life to avoid complications, as well as to resort to custom treatments. This would make it possible to save the lives of hundreds of people, drastically reducing the risk of heart disease and stroke.