GENETIC EPIDEMIOLOGY

European Journal of Epidemiology

, Volume 25, Issue 9, pp 643-649

First online:

Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

HFE gene mutations increase the risk of coronary heart disease in women

  • M. Carolina Pardo SilvaAffiliated withDepartment of Epidemiology, Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam
  • , Omer T. NjajouAffiliated withDepartment of Epidemiology, Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam
  • , Behrooz Z. AlizadehAffiliated withDepartment of Epidemiology, Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam
  • , Albert HofmanAffiliated withDepartment of Epidemiology, Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam
  • , Jacqueline C. M. WittemanAffiliated withDepartment of Epidemiology, Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam
  • , Cornelia M. van DuijnAffiliated withDepartment of Epidemiology, Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam
  • , A. Cecile J. W. JanssensAffiliated withDepartment of Epidemiology, Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam Email author 

Abstract

The purpose of the present study is to examine HFE gene mutations in relation to newly diagnosed (incident) coronary heart disease (CHD). In a population-based follow-up study of 7,983 individuals aged 55 years and older, we compared the risk of incident CHD between HFE carriers and non-carriers, overall and stratified by sex and smoking status. HFE mutations were significantly associated with an increased risk of incident CHD in women but not in men (hazard ratio [HR] for women = 1.7, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.2–2.4 versus HR for men = 0.9, 95% CI 0.7–1.2). This increased CHD risk associated with HFE mutations in women was statistically significant in never smokers (HR = 1.8, 95% CI 1.1–2.8) and current smokers (HR = 3.1, 95% CI 1.4–7.1), but not in former smokers (HR = 1.3, 95% CI 0.7–2.4). HFE mutations are associated with increased risk of incident CHD in women.

Keywords

HFE mutation Hemochromatosis Coronary heart disease Smoking Gender