Since beta2-adrenergic receptors are important regulators of blood pressure, genetic variation in this receptor could explain risk of elevated blood pressure in selected individuals. We tested the hypothesis that Gly16Arg, Gln27Glu, and Thr164Ile in the beta2-adrenergic receptor gene associated with elevated blood pressure.
We genotyped 9185 individuals from the adult Danish general population.
Allele frequencies of 16Arg, 27Glu, and 164Ile were 0.38, 0.44, and 0.01, respectively. Among women never treated with antihypertensive medication those heterozygous for Thr164Ile versus non-carriers had increased diastolic blood pressure (P=0.02). Women heterozygous for Thr164Ile versus non-carriers had an odds ratio for elevated blood pressure of 1.93 (95% CI: 1.30-2.86). Finally, women double heterozygous for Thr164Ile and Gln27Glu or Gly16Arg versus non-carriers at all 3 loci had an odds ratio for elevated blood pressure of 2.49 (1.28-4.85) or 3.19 (1.46-6.97). In men, blood pressure was not influenced by this genetic variation.
In women Thr164Ile heterozygosity is associated with increased diastolic blood pressure, and represent a risk factor for elevated blood pressure in women in the general population. This was most pronounced in those women also heterozygous for Gln27Glu or Gly16Arg.
In vertebrates, the synthesis of prostaglandin hormones is catalyzed by cyclooxygenase (COX)-1, a constitutively expressed enzyme with physiological functions, and COX-2, induced in inflammation and cancer. Prostaglandins have been detected in high concentrations in certain corals, and previous evidence suggested their biosynthesis through a lipoxygenase-allene oxide pathway. Here we describe the discovery of an ancestor of cyclooxygenases that is responsible for prostaglandin biosynthesis in coral. Using a homology-based polymerase chain reaction cloning strategy, the cDNA encoding a polypeptide with approximately 50% amino acid identity to both mammalian COX-1 and COX-2 was cloned and sequenced from the Arctic soft coral Gersemia fruticosa. Nearly all the amino acids essential for substrate binding and catalysis as determined in the mammalian enzymes are represented in coral COX: the arachidonate-binding Arg(120) and Tyr(355) are present, as are the heme-coordinating His(207) and His(388); the catalytic Tyr(385); and the target of aspirin attack, Ser(530). A key amino acid that determines the sensitivity to selective COX-2 inhibitors (Ile(523) in COX-1 and Val(523) in COX-2) is present in coral COX as isoleucine. The conserved Glu(524), implicated in the binding of certain COX inhibitors, is represented as alanine. Expression of the G. fruticosa cDNA afforded a functional cyclooxygenase that converted exogenous arachidonic acid to prostaglandins. The biosynthesis was inhibited by indomethacin, whereas the selective COX-2 inhibitor nimesulide was ineffective. We conclude that the cyclooxygenase occurs widely in the animal kingdom and that vertebrate COX-1 and COX-2 are evolutionary derivatives of the invertebrate precursor.
Familial defective apolipoprotein B-100 (FDB) is a genetic disorder resulting from a mutation in the apolipoprotein B-100 (apo B-100) gene, most frequently at position 3500, in which arginine is substituted for glutamine in the mature protein. This mutation drastically decreases the affinity of the mutant apo B-100 particle for the low-density lipoprotein (LDL) receptor, and hence decreases the clearance of cholesterol from the circulation. Familial hypercholesterolemia (FH), also a disorder of lipid metabolism, results from mutations in the gene for the LDL receptor. Both FDB and heterozygous FH occur at approximately the same frequency (1 in 500) among Caucasians and both produce clinical symptoms and signs that can be indistinguishable. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification and subsequent restriction analysis have been used to detect the substitution at codon 3500 in the apo B-100 gene using mutagenic PCR primers. At least one proband from 10 unrelated families with a history of hypercholesterolemia was screened by mutagenic PCR for FDB. Only one of 10 patients demonstrated the mutation for FDB. The mutant apo B-100 allele was shown to segregate with other clinically affected family members. These results demonstrate that molecular analysis is essential to distinguish between FDB and heterozygous FH in hypercholesterolemic families.
The effect of L-arginine on the Na+,K+-ATPase activity in rat aorta endothelium was studied at its physiological concentrations in the range of 10(-6)-10(-3) M. The enzyme activity was 35.5% increased by low concentrations of L-arginine (
Interaction of the lipoprotein lipase asparagine 291-->serine mutation with body mass index determines elevated plasma triacylglycerol concentrations: a study in hyperlipidemic subjects, myocardial infarction survivors, and healthy adults.
A mutation in the lipoprotein lipase (LPL) gene, resulting in the substitution of asparagine by serine at residue 291 (LPL-S291), was found to occur in young survivors of a myocardial infarction from Sweden, combined hyperlipidemic subjects from the United Kingdom, and type III hyperlipidemic subjects from Germany at allelic carrier frequencies no different from those found in companion healthy control subjects (3.63 vs. 3.37; 1.85 vs. 1.60; and 2.00 vs. 1.56%, respectively). In a group of 620 healthy middle-aged men from the United Kingdom with baseline and three subsequent annual lipid measurements, mean plasma triacylglycerol (TG), (but not plasma cholesterol) concentrations in carriers of the mutation were significantly elevated over non-carriers (1.95 vs. 1.61 mmol/l, P = 0.05, and 5.83 vs. 5.65 mmol/l, P = 0.29, respectively). When these healthy control subjects were divided according to tertiles of body mass index (BMI), as expected, non-carriers whose BMI was in the upper two tertiles (BMI > or = 25.0 kg/m2) had higher plasma TG concentrations than those in the lowest tertile (1.90 vs. 1.54 mmol/l), but this difference was much greater in LPL-S291 carriers (2.33 vs. 1.36 mmol/l, P = 0.01, BMI x genotype interaction, P = 0.02). To confirm this effect, a second group of 319 healthy subjects from the United Kingdom was screened for LPL-S291. The allelic frequency of the mutation was found to be 1.88% and the effect on plasma lipid concentrations was very similar to that observed in the first control group (plasma TG, 2.31 vs. 1.27 mmol/l, P or = 23.3 kg/m2) had higher plasma TG concentrations than non-carriers (2.31 vs. 1.42 mmol/l). Thus, the LPL-S291 variant may predispose individuals to elevated plasma TG concentrations under conditions such as increased BMI.
Leptin is a hormone expressed by the leptin gene, primarily in adipocytes, controlling food intake and energy expenditure. The effects of leptin are mediated by its receptor (LEPR) located in the central nervous system and other tissues, including adipocytes and endothelial cells. The aim of this study was to characterize two polymorphisms of LEPR, Lys109Arg (rs1137100) and Gln223Arg (rs1137101), as risk factors for early atherosclerosis. This connection has not been studied before.
This study was performed in the randomly selected, middle-aged control subjects (n=526) from our well-defined OPERA (Oulu Project Elucidating Risk of Atherosclerosis) study. Analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) was performed to study the associations between genotypes, intima media thickness (IMT) measurements, and risk factors for atherosclerosis.
Subjects with the genotype Lys109Arg had the lowest body mass index (BMI) (P?=?0.035), whereas Arg109Arg homozygotes had the highest total cholesterol (P=0.021) when adjusted for sex and age. Gln223Arg associated independently with systolic blood pressure (P=0.036). There were no differences in leptin concentrations between the genotypes. The adjusted (sex, age, BMI, smoking status, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, systolic blood pressure, and fasting blood glucose) means for the IMT measurements were lowest in the Arg109 and Arg223 homozygotes (P=0.042 and P=0.041, ANCOVA, respectively).
The variations in the LEPR gene are independently associated with early atherosclerosis and some of its risk factors. These variations could possibly affect leptin signaling and thereby modify the effects of leptin on the atherosclerotic process.
Complex I has a vital role in the energy production of the cell, and the clinical spectrum of complex I deficiency varies from severe lactic acidosis in infants to muscle weakness in adults. It has been estimated that the cause of complex I deficiency, especially in children, is often a mutation in the nuclear-encoded genes and, more rarely, in the genes encoded by mitochondrial DNA. We sequenced nine complex I subunit coding genes, NDUFAB1, NDUFS1, NDUFS2, NDUFS3, NDUFS4, NDUFS7, NDUFS8, NDUFV1 and NDUFV2, in 13 children with defined complex I deficiency. Two novel substitutions were found: a synonymous replacement 201A>T in NDUFV2 and a non-synonymous base exchange 52C>T in NDUFS8. The 52C>T substitution produced the replacement Arg18Cys in the leading peptide of the TYKY subunit. This novel missense mutation was found as a heterozygote in one patient and her mother, but not among 202 healthy controls nor among 107 children with undefined encephalomyopathy. Bioinformatic analyses suggested that Arg18Cys could lead to marked changes in the physicochemical properties of the mitochondrial-targeting peptide of TYKY, but we could not see changes in the assembly or activity of complex I or in the transcription of NDUFS8 in the fibroblasts of our patient. We suggest that Arg18Cys in the leading peptide of the TYKY subunit is not solely pathogenic, and that other genetic factors contribute to the disease-causing potential of this mutation.