Polymorphic metabolizing genes and susceptibility to atherosclerosis among cigarette smokers

Document Type


Publication Date



Atherosclerosis (AR) is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in the US and cigarette smoking is a major contributing factor to the disease. Like cigarette smoking in lung cancer, genetic susceptibility may be an important factor in determining who is more likely to develop AR. However, the current emphasis has been an susceptibility based on altered cardiovascular homeostasis. In this investigation, we studied 120 AR patients and 90 matched controls to elucidate the association between polymorphisms in some metabolizing genes (GSTM1, GSTT1, CYP2E1, mEH, PON1, and MPO) and susceptibility to AR. We found that the GSTT1 null allele and the fast allele of mEH* (exon 4) are associated with risk for AR. Furthermore, the combined genotypes GSTM1 null/CYP2E1*5B, GSTM1 null/mEH YY, and GSTT1 null/mEH YY are significantly associated with susceptibility to AR (OR = 15.42, 95% CI = 1.33-77.93, P = 0.021; OR = 3.48, 95% CI = 1.63-8.04, P = 0.0008; OR = 3.4; 95% CI = 0.99-17.38, P = 0.05; respectively). We have also conducted cytogenetic analysis to elucidate if induction of chromosome aberrations (CAs) is o biomarker of AR susceptibility. We found that among cigarette smokers (AR patients and smoker controls), individuals having the GSTM1 null allele had a significantly higher frequency of CAs compared to those with the normal allele (P < 0.05). This association was not found among nonsmokers. In addition, individuals who had inherited the CYP2E1*5B allele exhibited a significantly higher CA frequency (8.0 ± 0.82) compared to those with the CYP2E1 wild-type genotype (4.31 ± 0.35). Since the analysis of genetic susceptibility factors is still in its infancy, our study may stimulate additional investigations to understand the roles of genetic susceptibility and cigarette smoking in AR. © 2002 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

This document is currently not available here.