What We Can Learn from Twins: Congenital Heart Disease in the Danish Twin Registry
Our understanding of the causes of congenital heart defects has benefited tremendously from state-of-the-art genetic and epigenetic tools. The rapid progress is due in part to the development of novel, high throughput, cost effective sequencing technology - so called next generation sequencing - has made it possible to sequence the entire genome or all genes (whole exome sequencing). However, to fully understand the causes of congenital heart disease it has been important also to study population-based data that are available from large registries, which may take decades to establish. One such program has been in existence for over 60 years and has provided novel insights into the genetic and environmental mechanisms of many diseases including congenital heart defects. The Danish Twin Registry is one of the oldest twin registries in the world and it contains information about twins born in Denmark over the last more than 130 years.1
- Received July 24, 2013.
- Accepted July 30, 2013.