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CETP TaqIB Polymorphism, Serum Lipid Levels and Risk of Atrial Fibrillation: a Case-Control Study

The cholesteryl ester transfer protein (CETP) mediates the transfer of cholesteryl esters from high-density lipoproteins (HDL) to triglyceride (TG)-rich lipoproteins. A consistent number of investigations has suggested an association between the TaqIB polymorphism of the CETP gene, plasma HDL-C levels and the risk of cardiovascular disease, but the results are controversial. The aim of this study was to determine if the TaqIB polymorphism might be related to the presence of atrial fibrillation (AF). We conducted a case-control study, enrolling 109 Caucasian unrelated patients coming from Salento (Southern Italy) with documented AF and 109 controls selected from the same ward. The CETP TaqIB genotypes were determined by RFLP-PCR. The subjects with the B2B2 genotype seem to be more susceptible to AF development (OR=2.28, 95% CI 1.06-4.89, p=0.032). The AF incidence is higher if we consider only the female subgroup (OR=5.14, 95% CI 1.57-16.82, p=0.0061). In the AF female subgroup the B2B2 patients had a statistically significant decrease of HDL-C levels (1.50 ± 0.35 vs 2.07 ± 0.42; p=0.012) and statistically higher TG levels (1.34 ± 0.46 vs 0.77 ± 0.14; p=0.027) and TG/HDL-C ratio (2.14 ± 0.80 vs 0.88 ± 0.23; p=0.007) when compared to B2B2 female control subjects. When we analyzed the linkage between the TaqIB polymorphism and the promoter variant (-629C/A), we found that 100% of the B2 alleles of the TaqIB polymorphism were associated with the A alleles of the -629 promoter polymorphism in our subjects. This study suggests that in post-menopausal women atrial fibrillation could be promoted by the association of CETP B2B2/AA genotype with higher triglycerides values.

Credits: Francesca Galati; Antonio Galati; Maria P Bozzetti; Serafina Massari

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