Genetics Primer for the General Cardiologist
The remarkable advances in genetics and genomics that have occurred over the last few years are beginning to impact clinical care in cardiovascular medicine. New genotyping approaches have uncovered loci for common forms of disease, while whole exome or genome sequencing has begun to reveal the causes of less penetrant Mendelian forms of heart or vascular syndromes. These genetic successes are spawning major efforts in biological exploration, drug discovery, and potentially disruptive approaches to predictive testing. DNA analysis is already available for diagnostic, or even prognostic, use in many rare cardiovascular conditions. Widespread use of genetic testing is already emerging in the prediction of drug response, and nowhere is this more likely to be applied than in the high-risk syndromes of acute cardiology. Meanwhile, the ability to profile large numbers of genes, proteins, or metabolites in parallel is transforming not only mechanistic studies of cardiovascular disease, but also the identification of potential biomarkers. As the genome is better understood, so our ability to explore the major heritable and nonheritable modifiers of the basic DNA blueprint grows. This new series of Circulation reviews is intended to offer an entry point for the general cardiologist to cutting-edge genetic, genomic, or epigenomic approaches to disease, highlighting in particular their current and future application in modern cardiovascular translational studies and in the clinic.
- © 2011 American Heart Association, Inc.