Genes and Blood Pressure Risk
Monday, September 28, 2009

A recent study shows lifestyle factors interact with genes to influence blood pressure levels and increase or decrease the risk of high blood pressure. Dr. Edward Hill discusses the study in today’s 60 Second Housecall.

Genes may help explain why some people are more or less susceptible to the negative effects of drinking, smoking or lack of exercise on their blood pressure.

Lifestyle factors interact with genes to influence blood pressure levels and increase or decrease the risk of high blood pressure, a study by North Carolina researchers concluded.

The survey looked at how inherited genetic patterns influenced high blood pressure risk among those with different lifestyles and education levels.

The results showed that about 15 percent of the variation in diastolic values was due to genes.

Researchers also found:

• A link between cigarette use and gene interaction on diastolic blood pressure.

• Evidence that blood pressure among drinkers is affected by different genes in former and never drinkers.

• Evidence that an individual's physical activity level influences the genetic effects on blood pressure.

The next step is to identify the particular genes that interact with each of the three lifestyle factors to increase the risk of high blood pressure.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, I’m Dr. Edward Hill.