C-reactive protein genetics is associated with carotid artery compliance in men in The Cardiovascular Risk in Young Finns Study


      Although C-reactive protein (CRP) is known to predict cardiovascular events, its status as a causal risk factor is still controversial. CRP gene single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) have been shown to associate with CRP concentration, but no direct independent effect on early atherosclerotic changes has been demonstrated. We aimed to determine if CRP gene polymorphisms or haplotypes are associated with CRP concentration or carotid artery compliance (CAC), an indicator of subclinical atherosclerosis. We genotyped CRP gene polymorphisms −717A > G, −286C > T > A, +1059G > C, +1444C > T and +1846G > A and measured CRP concentration and CAC in 2283 young adults participating in The Cardiovascular Risk in Young Finns Study. A strong association was found between CRP genotypes and CRP concentration, which was also seen at the haplotype level. Linear regression analysis showed an independent effect of each SNP on CRP concentration after adjustment for risk factors, except for +1444 in males. Moreover, −286C > T > A, +1444C > T and +1846G > A were associated with CAC in males, but not in females. Men carrying the SNP −286 allele C had increased CAC after adjusting for risk factors. These data suggest that the presence of high producer CRP genotype is deleterious to carotid elasticity in men.


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