A U.S. heart patient is
prepared for a two-hour surgery at Bangkok Heart Hospital in
Bangkok Dec. 19, 2005. British scientists have found novel genes
linked with low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, known as
"bad" cholesterol, high levels of which cause harm by clogging the
arteries, according to BBC report on Saturday. (File
British scientists have found novel genes linked
with low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, known as "bad"
cholesterol, high levels of which cause harm by clogging the
arteries, according to BBC report on Saturday.
A team of researchers from The Barts and The London, Queen
Mary's School of Medicine and Dentistry carried out a detailed
study of the entire human DNA sequence to pinpoint which genes
might be involved and the team found a new region on chromosome 1
that appeared to influence LDL cholesterol.
This DNA was associated with a 6 percent increase in blood LDL
levels, according to the researchers.
"Our study found new genes for serum LDL, the cholesterol which
furs arteries. We believe our findings are of significant clinical
importance as they are strongly associated with cardiovascular
disease; they also represent excellent targets for new medicines,"
Professor Patricia Munroe said.
This finding is believed to have the potential to lead to the
development of new drugs to help lower cholesterol levels which in
turn could help thousands of heart patients across Britain where
coronary heart disease is the biggest killer.
Cardiovascular disease kills 233,000 people a year in Britain,
and an estimated 16.7 million a year world-wide.
(Xinhua News Agency January 14, 2008)