Polymorphic variation in choline transporter gene (CHT1) is associated with early, subclinical measures of carotid atherosclerosis in humans
Atherosclerosis is a heritable trait with little known about specific genetic influences on preclinical measures of plaque formation. Based on relations of parasympathetic-cholinergic function to atherosclerosis and to a choline transporter gene [CHT1 (G/T)] polymorphism, we investigated whether the same allelic variant predicts variation in carotid intima-media thickness (IMT) and plaque formation. Carotid IMT and plaque occurrence as well as genotyping for the CHT1 (G/T) variant were measured in a sample (N = 264) of generally healthy adults (age 30–55) of European ancestry. CHT1 GG homozygotes had greater IMT (P < 0.005) and plaque occurrence (P < 0.020) than T allele carriers. This is the first study showing polymorphic variation in the CHT1 gene to predict early, subclinical measures of carotid atherosclerosis which may aid in understanding cholinergic-vagal processes potentially underlying atherosclerotic risk.
KeywordsAtherosclerosis Intima-media thickness Plaque Cholinergic function Choline transport Acetylcholine
- 2.Roy H, Bhardwaj S, Yla-Herttuala S (2009, March 20) Molecular genetics of atherosclerosis. Hum Genet 125:467–491Google Scholar
- 3.Kleiger RE, Bigger JT, Moss AJ (1997) Decreased heart rate variability and its association with increased mortality after myocardial infraction. Am J Cardiol 73:845–849Google Scholar
- 28.Miller S, Dykes D, Polesky H (1988) A simple salting out procedure for extracting DNA from human nucleated cells. Nucleic Acid Res 16:12–15Google Scholar