Abstract P005: Lipid Gene Scores and the Incidence of Atrial Fibrillation: The Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study
Background—Recent studies show that lower levels of low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDLc) and total cholesterol are associated with incident atrial fibrillation (AF), whereas AF is not associated with high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDLc) and triglycerides. To test a potential causal association between lipid levels and AF risk, we assessed whether previously developed lipid gene scores are associated with the incidence of AF in a large community-based cohort.
Methods—Our analysis included 8849 white participants free of AF at baseline (1987-1989) and with lipid gene scores from the ARIC study. We used previously developed phenotype-specific lipid gene scores, based on loci significantly associated with lipid levels. Incidence of AF was ascertained through 2009 from study visit ECGs, and ICD codes from hospitalizations and death certificates. Cox proportional hazards models were used to estimate the hazard ratio (HR) of AF by each respective lipid gene score quintile and per 1 standard deviation (SD) increase of each effect-size weighted lipid gene score.
Results—During a median follow-up of 20.7 years, we identified 1207 incident AF cases. The HDLc gene score, the total cholesterol score, and the triglyceride score were not associated with incidence of AF. The continuous LDLc score was not associated with AF overall, but had a significant interaction with gender (p=0.03). A higher LDLc score was associated with a lower incidence of AF in females but not in males (table): multivariable HR and 95% confidence interval (CI) per 1-SD increase: 0.90 (0.83-0.98) vs. 1.03 (0.95-1.11). When the LDLc gene score was split into quintiles, a higher LDLc score for females was associated with a lower AF risk: HR (95% CI) = 0.74 (0.56-0.98) when comparing extreme quintiles (table).
Conclusion—In this large population-based study, a higher LDLc score in females was associated with a lower incidence of AF. No association with AF was observed in the LDLc score in males or with the gene scores for HDLc, total cholesterol or triglycerides.
- © 2013 by American Heart Association, Inc.