Nav: Home

Study finds certain genetic test not useful in predicting heart disease risk

February 21, 2020

A Polygenic Risk Score -- a genetic assessment that doctors have hoped could predict coronary heart disease (CHD) in patients -- has been found not to be a useful predictive biomarker for disease risk, according to a Vanderbilt study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Lead author Jonathan Mosley, MD, PhD, assistant professor of Medicine and Biomedical Informatics, and senior author Thomas Wang, MD, former director of the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine and now chair of the Department of Internal Medicine at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, conducted a retrospective cohort study of the predictive accuracy of polygenic risk scores in 7,306 adults of European ancestry ages 45-79. The patients were taken from two large cohort studies, the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) study and the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA).

Mosley found that the polygenic risk score didn't significantly improve prediction of CHD risk in this generally white, middle-age population. It was no more useful than the conventional method of determining CHD Risk -- assigning a patient a clinical risk score based on factors including age, gender, cholesterol levels and tobacco use, Mosley said.

Physicians have long sought to reduce cardiovascular mortality by early identification of CHD.

Though his findings suggest a genetic biomarker has not been discovered for this general population of CHD patients, Mosley said further study is needed to determine whether special populations may benefit from a polygenic risk score.

"Genetic methods are getting better and people are developing these risk scores that are performing better than they have in the past," he said. "There are a lot of calls to see whether these can be converted to clinical tools. A critical piece of this process is to conduct a rigorous evaluation of any risk score, as has been done for other proposed cardiac biomarkers."

Mosley said the study suggests that polygenic risk scores should not be added to the standard of care for identifying high-risk CHD patients at this time. "Essentially, they are more likely to add costs than benefits at this point," he said.

Wang emphasized, "This study does not minimize the importance of genetic contributors to cardiovascular risk. What it does show is that genetic factors provide limited information about who will actually have a cardiovascular disease event."

"I think it's possible that we could develop better-performing scores," Mosley added. "I think you could develop more rigorous methodologies that may enhance the degree to which these predict."
-end-


Vanderbilt University Medical Center

Related Medicine Articles:

Moving beyond 'defensive medicine'
Study shows removing liability concerns slightly increases C-section procedures during childbirth.
Artificial intelligence and family medicine: Better together
Researcher at the University of Houston are encouraging family medicine physicians to actively engage in the development and evolution of artificial intelligence to open new horizons that make AI more effective, equitable and pervasive.
NUS Medicine researchers can reprogramme cells to original state for regenerative medicine
Scientists from NUS Medicine have found a way to induce totipotency in embryonic cells that have already matured into pluripotency.
Protein injections in medicine
One day, medical compounds could be introduced into cells with the help of bacterial toxins.
Study reveals complementary medicine use remains hidden to conventional medicine providers
Research reveals that 1 in 3 complementary medicine (CM) users do not disclose their CM use to their medical providers, posing significant direct and indirect risks of adverse effects and harm due to unsafe concurrent use of CM and conventional medicine use.
Study of traditional medicine finds high use in Sub-Saharan Africa despite modern medicine
Researchers who have undertaken the first systematic review of into the use of traditional, complementary and alternative medicines (TCAM) in Sub-Saharan Africa found its use is significant and not just because of a lack of resources or access to 'conventional medicine'.
New techniques allow medicine to see the whole again
Medical diagnoses mostly focuses on resolving isolated issues. But, fixing one problem may create others and even invoke an overall health collapse.
Progress toward personalized medicine
A few little cells that are different from the rest can have a big effect.
CU School of Medicine's Kenneth Tyler article in New England Journal of Medicine
Kenneth Tyler, M.D., the Louise Baum Endowed Chair in Neurology at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, is author of a review article about acute viral encephalitis in the current issue of The New England Journal of Medicine.
An advance for precision medicine
Scientists have developed a method to quickly and efficiently recognize the subtypes of cells within the body for the first time.
More Medicine News and Medicine Current Events

Trending Science News

Current Coronavirus (COVID-19) News

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2020.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Listen Again: Reinvention
Change is hard, but it's also an opportunity to discover and reimagine what you thought you knew. From our economy, to music, to even ourselves–this hour TED speakers explore the power of reinvention. Guests include OK Go lead singer Damian Kulash Jr., former college gymnastics coach Valorie Kondos Field, Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs, and entrepreneur Nick Hanauer.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#562 Superbug to Bedside
By now we're all good and scared about antibiotic resistance, one of the many things coming to get us all. But there's good news, sort of. News antibiotics are coming out! How do they get tested? What does that kind of a trial look like and how does it happen? Host Bethany Brookeshire talks with Matt McCarthy, author of "Superbugs: The Race to Stop an Epidemic", about the ins and outs of testing a new antibiotic in the hospital.
Now Playing: Radiolab

Dispatch 6: Strange Times
Covid has disrupted the most basic routines of our days and nights. But in the middle of a conversation about how to fight the virus, we find a place impervious to the stalled plans and frenetic demands of the outside world. It's a very different kind of front line, where urgent work means moving slow, and time is marked out in tiny pre-planned steps. Then, on a walk through the woods, we consider how the tempo of our lives affects our minds and discover how the beats of biology shape our bodies. This episode was produced with help from Molly Webster and Tracie Hunte. Support Radiolab today at Radiolab.org/donate.