Molecular Diagnosis & Therapy

, Volume 12, Issue 3, pp 145–156 | Cite as

Cerebral Small Vessel Disease

Genetic Risk Assessment for Prevention and Treatment
  • Ada Lam
  • M. Anne Hamilton-Bruce
  • Jim Jannes
  • Simon A. KoblarEmail author
CNS Disorders


Cerebrovascular disease is a major burden to individuals and their communities worldwide. Stroke is one of the leading causes of death and disability, and the prevention and treatment of stroke can be improved with a better understanding of its causation. Cerebral small vessel disease (SVD) is a subset of cerebrovascular disease, and has an equally large impact on an individual’s quality of life. Although many risk factors are involved, we propose that genetics has a significant role in the pathogenesis of SVD through a complex interplay of environmental and multigenetic factors. Advances in molecular technology have enabled the human genome to be investigated both at a population and, more recently, an individual level. A better understanding of the molecular basis of SVD will enable the development of therapies to help in its prevention and treatment. This review assesses the molecular genetics underlying cerebral SVD.


Angiotensin Converting Enzyme White Matter Lesion White Matter Hyperintensity Small Vessel Disease Lacunar Infarction 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



No funding was provided for the preparation of this review, and the authors have no conflicts of interest relevant to its content.

The authors would like to acknowledge the Departments of Neurology and Medicine, The Queen Elizabeth Hospital Research Foundation, and the University of Adelaide for their support.


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Copyright information

© Adis Data Information BV 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ada Lam
    • 1
  • M. Anne Hamilton-Bruce
    • 2
  • Jim Jannes
    • 2
  • Simon A. Koblar
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.School of MedicineUniversity of Adelaide, The Queen Elizabeth Hospital Campus, Stroke Research ProgrammeWoodville SouthAustralia
  2. 2.Stroke Research Programme Department of NeurologyThe Queen Elizabeth HospitalWoodville SouthAustralia

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