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Ethnicity influences genetic susceptibility in COPD

Posted Sep 24 2009 10:35pm

By Mark Cowen

By Mark Cowen

Ethnicity plays an important role in genetic susceptibility to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), results of a meta-analysis show.

Writing in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, H Marike Boezen and colleagues from the University of Groningen in The Netherlands explain that smoking is the main cause of COPD, but genetic susceptibility is believed to play a determining role as only a relatively small proportion of smokers develop the disease.

However, they add: “Studies on the role of candidate genes and their polymorphisms in COPD development have so far produced ambiguous results.”

To investigate further, the researchers performed a literature search and identified 20 polymorphisms in 12 genes that were considered to be strong COPD-candidate genes.

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