Abstract 17245: The Heritability of Ideal Cardiovascular Health: The Framingham Heart Study
Background: Recent AHA Strategic Impact Goals for 2020 emphasized the importance of increasing the proportion of the population with ideal cardiovascular (CV) health. However, the potential genetic contribution to achieving ideal CV health remains unknown; we sought to determine the heritability of ideal CV health.
Methods: Related members of the Original, Offspring and 3rd Generation Framingham Heart Study cohorts who had risk factors measured at similar ages were included. Two definitions of ideal CV health were used: 1) clinical: untreated serum cholesterol <200 mg/dl and SBP/DBP of <120/<80 mm Hg and not diabetic; and 2) clinical+behavioral: the above definition plus not a current smoker and BMI < 25 kg/m2. We examined the heritability of having ideal CV health at 40± 5 and 50± 5 yrs; and of maintaining ideal CV health through middle age (i.e., at both ages 40 and 50 yrs). Logistic regression models adjusting for age, sex and cohort were used to calculate standardized residuals which were then applied in SOLAR to estimate additive heritability.
Results: Data on participants (53% female) at age 40 (n=7,540), age 50 (n=8,922), and for maintenance of ideal CV health (n=5,090) were used. The prevalence of ideal CV health was 26.0% at age 40 and 12.2% at age 50 for the clinical definition; and 11.6% and 5.2%, respectively, for the clinical+behavioral definition. Prevalence was higher among more contemporary cohorts and in women and decreased with age. The heritability of ideal CV health was modest (Table) and decreased from 18% at age 40 to 13% at age 50. Heritability estimates were similar for both definitions.
Conclusion: Health behaviors and lifestyle factors appear to explain the majority of the variability in ideal CV health. Results of the study showed a modest proportion of the variability in ideal CV health is explained by genetic factors, particularly earlier in middle age. The association between genetic variation and ideal CVD health warrants further investigation.
- © 2010 by American Heart Association, Inc.