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Keywords

cardiovascular disease, cardiovascular nursing, genetic testing, genotyping, microarray, single nucleotide polymorphism, thrombospondin

 

Authors

  1. Cheek, Dennis J. PhD, RN, FAHA
  2. Cesan, Annushka BS

Abstract

Cardiovascular disease, a primary cause of mortality in the United States, has a complex pathologic process involving many genes. The high-throughput technology (microarray or "DNA chip") used to decipher the human genome is now being employed to identify key genes in its development. A study focusing on candidate genes associated with premature cardiovascular disease discovered that missense variations in the thrombospondin 1 and 4 genes were associated with premature coronary artery disease, while a mutation in the non-coding region of a thrombospondin 2 gene imparts protection from developing heart disease. Although the clinical implications of microarray technology are still under investigation, this research may lead to a diagnostic test to determine a patient's risk for developing heart disease.