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1.  Baseline depressive symptoms are not associated with clinically important levels of incident hypertension during two years of follow-up: the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis 
Hypertension  2010;55(2):408.
Previous longitudinal cohort studies have suggested an association between baseline depressive symptoms and incident hypertension. We assessed this possible association using data from the Multi-ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis, a population-based prospective cohort study of 6,814 US adults from 4 different racial/ethnic groups. Baseline users of antihypertensive medications and participants lost to follow-up were excluded leaving 3914 participants. Patients with baseline depressive symptoms (n=622) were defined using a high score on the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (≥ 16) or the use of an antidepressant medication. Hypertension was defined as systolic blood pressure ≥ 140, diastolic blood pressure ≥90 or new use of antihypertensive medications plus physician diagnosis. Estimates were adjusted for known risk factors including: age, sex, baseline blood pressure, diabetes, and body mass index. Untreated blood pressure was estimated using an imputation approach. A total of 477 participants developed hypertension. Using relative risk regression, patients with baseline depressive symptoms did not have an increased risk of incident hypertension (Relative Risk = 1.02; 95% Confidence Interval (CI):0.99 to 1.05) although an association between tricyclic antidepressants and hypertension (Relative Risk 1.20; 95% CI:1.05 to 1.37) was observed in sub-group analysis. Depression, even after adjustment for covariates, was associated with small changes in systolic (+2.4 mmHG; 95% CI: 0.2 to 4.7) and diastolic (+0.8 mmHG; 95% CI: −0.6 to 2.3) blood pressure. Depressive symptoms may be associated with slight increases in blood pressure in this multi-ethnic cohort but it is premature to conclude much without longer studies in other populations.
doi:10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.109.139824
PMCID: PMC2821214  PMID: 20065156
Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis; depression; hypertension; blood pressure; imputation; censored normal regression
2.  Time trends in the use of anti-hypertensive medications: results from the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis 
Background
Previous research has suggested that emerging evidence from randomized controlled trials (RCTs) is often not reflected in physician selection of medication class for first-line anti-hypertensive therapy.
Objectives
To evaluate the association of RCT evidence in December 2002 from the Antihypertensive and Lipid-Lowering treatment to prevent Heart Attack Trial (ALLHAT) on use of anti-hypertensive medications over time in a multi-ethnic cohort.
Methods
The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis study, a prospective cohort study of 6,814 adults from 4 ethnic groups, had four separate assessments of drug use. Users of anti-hypertensive medications at baseline were excluded. We evaluated temporal changes in the medication class reported by new users of antihypertensive medications.
Results
After the exclusion of antihypertensive drug users at baseline, 32% of new users of anti-hypertensive drugs seen at exam 2 were prescribed a diuretic. The publication of ALLHAT was associated with a subsequent increase in the proportion of new users taking diuretics at exam 3 compared with exam 2 (Relative Risk (RR):1.31; 95% Confidence Interval (CI):1.09–1.59). After the report from ALLHAT, the proportion of users of diuretics seen at exam 3 rose to 44% (starting in 2004) and 39% in exam 4 (starting in 2005). This increase in the proportion of diuretic use among new users of anti-hypertensive medications declined slightly but could still be detected at exam 4 as compared to exam 2 (RR:1.28; 95% CI:1.04–1.57).
Conclusions
The randomized trial evidence from the ALLHAT study was temporally associated with a moderate increase in diuretic use.
doi:10.1002/pds.1788
PMCID: PMC2844254  PMID: 19551700
Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis; antihypertensive medications; drug utilization; longitudinal
3.  Demographic, medical, and behavioral characteristics associated with over the counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug use in a population based cohort: results from the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis 
Background
Three types of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can be obtained both over the counter (OTC) and by prescription in the United States. OTC NSAID use is not recorded in prescription claims databases; this might lead to differential misclassification of NSAID exposure status in studies that use computerized pharmacy databases to study NSAID use.
Objective
To evaluate characteristics of OTC versus prescription NSAID users
Methods
This analysis is set within the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) study; a prospective cohort study of 6,814 adults from 4 ethnic groups (European descent, Asian, African-American and Hispanic) with a mean age of 62 years. The cohort was restricted to those who initiated NSAID use (aspirin, ibuprofen or naproxen) during follow-up. We compared information about age, sex, ethnicity, body mass index, smoking, diabetes, medication use, education, income, health insurance status and exercisebetween groups.
Results
OTC NSAID use was prevalent at baseline (25% Aspirin, 9% Ibuprofen, 2% Naproxen). Compared to prescribed NSAID use, OTC NSAID use was lower for users of non-European descent for all classes: aspirin (p<0.0001), ibuprofen (p<0.0001) and naproxen (p=0.0094). For aspirin, differences were seen for male gender (Relative Risk (RR):0.92; 95%(Confidence interval) CI:0.86–0.98), use of lipid lowering drugs (RR:0.88; 95% CI: 0.80–0.96), low income (RR:0.89; 95%CI:0.81–0.97), and participants one standard deviation above average in intentional exercise (RR:1.03; 95%CI:1.01–1.05).
Conclusions
OTC NSAID use is prevalent in an older multi-ethnic population and OTC users differ from prescription NSAID users. Caution should be exercised when using prescribed NSAIDs as a proxy for NSAID use.
doi:10.1002/pds.2065
PMCID: PMC3014611  PMID: 21182156
Aspirin; over the counter drug use; ethnicity; Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis
4.  Ethnic Differences in the Relationship of Carotid Atherosclerosis to Coronary Calcification: The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis 
Atherosclerosis  2007;197(1):132-138.
Ethnic differences in non-invasive measures of atherosclerosis are increasingly being reported, but the relationship of these measures to each other has not been widely explored. Carotid ultrasonographic and computed cardiac tomographic findings were compared in 6,814 participants of White, Black, Hispanic, and Chinese ethnicities free of overt cardiovascular disease. Coronary calcium and carotid atherosclerosis were strongly related to each other in all ethnic groups. Associations of coronary calcium prevalence and common carotid intimal-medial thickness (IMT) differed by ethnicity in women, being weakest among Black women (0.07 mm IMT difference between those with and without coronary calcium) compared to the other three groups (0.10–0.12 mm difference, p = 0.007). Estimated percent increments in internal carotid IMT per 10% increment in coronary calcium score were highest in Hispanics (18.5%) and lowest in Blacks (6.1%, p < 0.01).
Coronary calcium may be less strongly associated with carotid atherosclerosis in Blacks, particularly Black women, than in other ethnic groups. These differences should be pursued for relationships to coronary events to determine whether coronary calcium carries the same risk information in other ethnic groups as it does in Whites.
doi:10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2007.02.030
PMCID: PMC2314669  PMID: 17412347
atherosclerosis; calcium; carotid arteries; epidemiology
5.  Differences in the Incidence of Congestive Heart Failure by Ethnicity 
Archives of internal medicine  2008;168(19):2138-2145.
Background
The relationship between incident congestive heart failure (CHF) and ethnicity as well as racial/ethnic differences in the mechanisms leading to CHF have not been demonstrated in a multiracial, population-based study. Our objective was to evaluate the relationship between race/ethnicity and incident CHF.
Methods
The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) is a cohort study of 6814 participants of 4 ethnicities: white (38.5%), African American (27.8%), Hispanic (21.9%), and Chinese American (11.8%). Participants with a history of cardiovascular disease at baseline were excluded. Cox proportional hazards models were used for data analysis.
Results
During a median follow-up of 4.0 years, 79 participants developed CHF (incidence rate: 3.1 per 1000 person-years). African Americans had the highest incidence rate of CHF, followed by Hispanic, white, and Chinese American participants (incidence rates: 4.6, 3.5, 2.4, and 1.0 per 1000 person-years, respectively). Although risk of developing CHF was higher among African American compared with white participants (hazard ratio, 1.8; 95% confidence interval, 1.1-3.1), adding hypertension and/or diabetes mellitus to models including ethnicity eliminated statistical ethnic differences in incident CHF. Moreover, African Americans had the highest proportion of incident CHF not preceded by clinical myocardial infarction (75%) compared with other ethnic groups (P = .06).
Conclusions
The higher risk of incident CHF among African Americans was related to differences in the prevalence of hypertension and diabetes mellitus as well as socioeconomic status. The mechanisms of CHF also differed by ethnicity; interim myocardial infarction had the least influence among African Americans, and left ventricular mass increase had the greatest effect among Hispanic and white participants.
doi:10.1001/archinte.168.19.2138
PMCID: PMC3038918  PMID: 18955644
6.  Racial/ethnic Heterogeneity in the Socioeconomic Patterning of CVD Risk Factors: in the United States: The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis 
Many studies document racial variation, gender differences, and socioeconomic status (SES) patterning in cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors but few studies have investigated heterogeneity in SES differences by race/ethnicity or gender. Using data from the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (N = 6,814) and stratified regression models, we investigated race/ethnic differences in the SES patterning of diabetes, hypertension, smoking, and body mass index (BMI). Inverse socioeconomic gradients in hypertension, diabetes, smoking, and BMI were observed in White and Black women but associations were weaker or absent in Hispanic and Chinese women (except in the case of diabetes for Hispanic women). Even greater heterogeneity in social patterning of risk factors was observed in men. In White men all four risk factors were inversely associated with socioeconomic position, although often associations were only present or were stronger for education than for income. The inverse socioeconomic patterning was much less consistent in men of other races/ethnic groups, and higher SES was associated with higher BMI in non-White men. These findings have implications for understanding the causes of social patterning, for the analysis of SES adjusted race/ethnic differences, and for the targeting of interventions.
doi:10.1353/hpu.2011.0001
PMCID: PMC3312013  PMID: 21317510
Cardiovascular disease; risk factors; socioeconomic status; race; ethnicity
7.  Relationship between Baseline Coronary Calcium Score and Demonstration of Coronary Artery Stenoses During Follow up in the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) 
JACC. Cardiovascular imaging  2009;2(10):1175-1183.
Objectives
The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) is a population-based study of 6,814 men and women. We sought to analyze the relationship between the extent of coronary calcium (CC) at baseline and the severity of coronary stenoses in clinically indicated coronary angiography studies during follow-up.
Background
CC is an established predictor of major cardiovascular events. Yet, the relationship between CC and the distribution and severity of coronary artery stenoses has not been widely explored.
Methods
All MESA participants underwent non-contrast enhanced cardiac CT during enrollment to determine baseline CC. We analyzed 175 consecutive angiography reports from participants who underwent coronary catheterization for clinical indications during a median follow-up period of 18 months. The association between baseline CC and the severity of coronary stenosis detected in coronary angiographies was determined.
Results
Baseline Agatston score was zero in only 7/175 (4%) MESA participants who underwent invasive angiography during follow-up. When coronary arteries were studied separately, 13–18% of coronary arteries with ≥75% stenosis had zero calcium mass scores at baseline. There was close association between baseline calcium mass score and the severity of stenosis in each of the coronary arteries (test for trend, p<0.001). As an example, mean calcium mass scores for <50, 50–74 and ≥75% stenosis in the left anterior descending coronary artery were 105.1 mg, 157.2 mg and 302.2 mg, respectively (p<0.001). Finally, there was a direct relationship between the total Agatston Score at baseline and the number of diseased vessels (test for trend, p<0.001)
Conclusion
The majority of patients with clinically indicated coronary angiography during follow up had detectable coronary calcification at baseline. While there is a significant relationship between the extent of calcification and mean degree of stenosis in individual coronary vessels, 16% of the coronary arteries with significant stenoses had no calcification at baseline.
doi:10.1016/j.jcmg.2009.06.014
PMCID: PMC2803053  PMID: 19833306
8.  Relationship between Common Carotid Intima-Media Thickness and Thoracic Aortic Calcification: the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis 
Atherosclerosis  2009;209(1):142-146.
Background
Mean maximum carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT) is associated with both coronary artery disease and cerebral thromboembolism. Thoracic aortic calcification (TAC) detected by computed tomography (CT) is also highly associated with vascular disease and cardiovascular risk. No previous study has examined the relationship between CIMT and TAC in a large patient cohort. We performed a cross-sectional study to determine whether, at baseline, there is a relationship between CIMT and CT-determined TAC score.
Methods
In the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis, the study cohort included a population based sample of four ethnic groups (Chinese, White, Hispanic and African-American) of 6814 women and men ages 45-84 years. After exclusion of 198 persons due to incomplete information, we compared results of 6616 participants with both CIMT and TAC. TAC was measured from the lower edge of the pulmonary artery bifurcation to the cardiac apex. CIMT at the common carotid artery site was represented as the mean maximal CIMT of the right and left near and far walls, respectively. Multivariable relative risk regression analysis was used to evaluate relationships between TAC and CIMT.
Results
The prevalence of TAC was 28% (n=1846) and the mean maximum (±SD) CIMT was 0.87±0.19 mm. A higher prevalence of TAC was noted across increasing CIMT quartiles (1st: 12%, 2nd: 21%, 3rd: 30%, 4th: 49%, P<0.0001). One standard deviation increase in CIMT was associated with a 16% higher likelihood for presence of TAC after adjusting for demographics and cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors (95% CI: 1.12-1.26). In addition, individuals with CIMT in the highest quartile, as compared to those with CIMT in the first quartile, had a 76% higher likelihood for presence of TAC (prevalence ratio [PR]: 1.76, 95% CI: 1.37-2.26). In race-ethnic stratified analyses, similar associations were seen in all groups. Among those with TAC>0, a higher CIMT was significantly associated with continuous TAC scores (log transformed) in the overall population as well as among all ethnic-racial groups.
Conclusions
Our study demonstrates that TAC is associated with increasing severity of carotid atherosclerotic burden as measured by CIMT. The combined utility of these two noninvasive measures of subclinical atherosclerosis for CVD risk assessment needs to be determined in future studies.
doi:10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2009.09.013
PMCID: PMC2830343  PMID: 19782983
Atherosclerosis; carotid IMT; aortic calcification; ethnic; cardiac CT
9.  Relationship between Coronary Artery and Descending Thoracic Aortic Calcification as Detected by Computed Tomography: the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis 
Atherosclerosis  2008;204(2):440-446.
Background
Cardiac computed tomography (CT) is a well-established tool for the detection of cardiovascular calcium. Coronary artery calcification (CAC) is highly sensitive for the detection of coronary artery disease (CAD) as well as predictive of future cardiovascular (CV) events. Descending thoracic aortic calcification (DTAC) is common in the elderly and its presence is also associated with increased risk of CV events. Previous studies demonstrate that DTAC is associated with obstructive CAD and coronary risk factors. However, no prior studies have examined the association of CAC and DTAC as detected by cardiac CT in a large population-based cohort.
Methods
In the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis, the study population included a population based sample of four ethnic groups (Chinese, White, Hispanic and African-American) of 6814 women and men ages 45−84 years old. Participants underwent non-enhanced cardiac CT and both CAC and DTAC were quantified. DTAC was measured from the lower edge of the pulmonary artery bifurcation to the cardiac apex. Multivariable relative risk regression was used to evaluate relationships between CAC, DTAC and measured cardiovascular risk factors.
Results
Overall 3030 (44%) did not demonstrate any detectable CAC or DTAC. A total of 1930 (28%) had only CAC, 386 (6%) had isolated DTAC, and 1464 (22%) participants were found to have both CAC and DTAC. CAC had a higher prevalence than DTAC in men (58% vs. 45%). Participants with DTAC were older than those with CAC (mean age was 71 and 66 years old, respectively). Participants with DTAC had increased risk for the presence of CAC independent of cardiovascular risk factors (prevalence ratio [PR]; 1.17 95% CI 1.07−1.28). Severity of DTAC was a stronger predictor of the presence of CAC in women as compared to men (PR; 1.04 95% CI 1.02 −1.06, and PR; 0.99 95% CI 0.98− 1.01, respectively).
Conclusions
DTAC was found to be a strong predictor of CAC independent of CV risk factors. Ongoing follow-up of this cohort will evaluate whether DTAC is an independent marker of risk for CV events.
doi:10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2008.09.041
PMCID: PMC2732017  PMID: 19027115
10.  Association of Endogenous Sex Hormones With Diabetes andImpaired Fasting Glucose in Men 
Diabetes Care  2009;32(6):1049-1051.
OBJECTIVE
To assess associations of sex hormones with impaired fasting glucose (IFG) and type 2 diabetes in men.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
A total of 3,156 African American, Non-Hispanic white, Hispanic, and Chinese-American men aged 45–84 years who participated in the baseline visit of the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) were included. Oddsratios and95% CIs for type 2 diabetes and IFG compared with normal fasting glucose for quartiles of hormones were estimated.
RESULTS
After adjusting for age, ethnicity, BMI, and waist circumference, IFG and diabetes were associated inversely with total testosterone and sex hormone–binding globulin (SHBG) and positively with estradiol (E2). Dehydroepiandrosterone was positively associated with IFG but not with diabetes. Associations did not differ across ethnic groups.
CONCLUSIONS
Regardless of obesity, total testosterone and SHBG were associated inversely and E2 was associated positively with IFG and diabetes in men. Further research is warranted to better understand the underlying biological mechanisms.
doi:10.2337/dc08-2216
PMCID: PMC2681025  PMID: 19289858
11.  Fasting Glucose GWAS Candidate Region Analysis across Ethnic Groups in the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) 
Genetic epidemiology  2012;36(4):384-391.
Genetic variants associated with fasting glucose in European ancestry populations are increasingly well understood. However, the nature of the associations between these SNPs and fasting glucose in other racial and ethnic groups is unclear. We sought to examine regions previously identified to be associated with fasting glucose in Caucasian GWAS across multiple ethnicities in the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA). Non-diabetic MESA participants with fasting glucose measured at the baseline exam and with GWAS genotyping were included; 2349 Caucasians, 664 individuals of Chinese descent, 1366 African Americans, and 1171 Hispanics. Genotype data was generated from the Affymetrix 6.0 array and imputation in IMPUTE. Fasting glucose was regressed on SNP dosage data in each ethnic group adjusting for age, gender, MESA study center, and ethnic-specific principal components. SNPs from the three gene regions with the strongest associations to fasting glucose in previous Caucasian GWAS (MTNR1B / GCK / G6PC2) were examined in depth. There was limited power to replicate associations in other ethnic groups due to smaller allele frequencies and limited sample size; SNP associations may also have differed across ethnic groups due to differing LD patterns with causal variants. rs10830963 in MTNR1B and rs4607517 in GCK demonstrated consistent magnitude and direction of association with fasting glucose across ethnic groups, although the associations were often not nominally significant. In conclusion, certain SNPs in MTNR1B and GCK demonstrate consistent effects across four racial and ethnic groups, narrowing the putative region for these causal variants.
doi:10.1002/gepi.21632
PMCID: PMC3507617  PMID: 22508271
GWAS; fasting glucose; SNP
12.  Relationships of Mitral Annular Calcification to Cardiovascular Risk Factors: The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) 
Atherosclerosis  2010;213(2):558-562.
Background
Mitral annular calcification (MAC) is a fibrous, degenerative calcification of the mitral valve. The relationship between MAC and cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors is not well defined. Thus, we performed a cross-sectional study to determine which CVD risk factors are independently associated with MAC in the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA).
Methods
MESA includes 6,814 women and men ages 45–84 years old without apparent CVD in 4 ethnic groups (12% Chinese, 38% Caucasian, 22% Hispanic, and 28% African-American). MAC was defined by presence of calcium in the mitral annulus by cardiac computed tomography at enrollment. Multivariable logistic regression was used to evaluate relationships between MAC and CVD risk factors.
Results
The overall prevalence of MAC was 9%. The prevalence of MAC was highest in Caucasians (12%), followed by Hispanics (10%), African Americans (7%) and was lowest in Chinese (5%). Characteristics associated with MAC included age (p<0.01), female gender (p<0.01), increased body mass index (BMI) (p=0.03), and former smoking status (p<0.008). The MAC group had a higher prevalence of hypertension, diabetes mellitus (DM), and family history of heart attack (all p<0.001). After adjusting for all variables, age, female gender, diabetes mellitus, and increased BMI remained strongly associated with MAC.
Conclusions
Age, female gender, DM, and increased BMI were significantly associated with MAC. Prevalence of MAC was strongly associated with female gender and increasing age in all ethnicities.
doi:10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2010.08.072
PMCID: PMC2997868  PMID: 20926076
Mitral annular calcification; MESA; Cardiac CT; risk factors
13.  Preventing relapse in recurrent depression using mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, antidepressant medication or the combination: trial design and protocol of the MOMENT study 
BMC Psychiatry  2012;12:125.
Background
Depression is a common psychiatric disorder characterized by a high rate of relapse and recurrence. The most commonly used strategy to prevent relapse/recurrence is maintenance treatment with antidepressant medication (mADM). Recently, it has been shown that Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) is at least as effective as mADM in reducing the relapse/recurrence risk. However, it is not yet known whether combination treatment of MBCT and mADM is more effective than either of these treatments alone. Given the fact that most patients have a preference for either mADM or for MBCT, the aim of the present study is to answer the following questions. First, what is the effectiveness of MBCT in addition to mADM? Second, how large is the risk of relapse/recurrence in patients withdrawing from mADM after participating in MBCT, compared to those who continue to use mADM after MBCT?
Methods/design
Two parallel-group, multi-center randomized controlled trials are conducted. Adult patients with a history of depression (3 or more episodes), currently either in full or partial remission and currently treated with mADM (6 months or longer) are recruited. In the first trial, we compare mADM on its own with mADM plus MBCT. In the second trial, we compare MBCT on its own, including tapering of mADM, with mADM plus MBCT. Follow-up assessments are administered at 3-month intervals for 15 months. Primary outcome is relapse/recurrence. Secondary outcomes are time to, duration and severity of relapse/recurrence, quality of life, personality, several process variables, and incremental cost-effectiveness ratio.
Discussion
Taking into account patient preferences, this study will provide information about a) the clinical and cost-effectiveness of mADM only compared with mADM plus MBCT, in patients with a preference for mADM, and b) the clinical and cost-effectiveness of withdrawing from mADM after MBCT, compared with mADM plus MBCT, in patients with a preference for MBCT.
Trial registration
ClinicalTrials.gov: NCT00928980
doi:10.1186/1471-244X-12-125
PMCID: PMC3469366  PMID: 22925198
Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy; Antidepressant medication; Depression; Relapse prevention; Randomized controlled trial
14.  Breast cancer survival in South Asian women in England and Wales 
Study objectives: To estimate ethnic and socioeconomic differences in breast cancer incidence and survival between South Asians and non-South Asians in England and Wales, and to provide a baseline for surveillance of cancer survival in South Asians, the largest ethnic minority.
Setting: 115 712 women diagnosed with first primary invasive breast cancer in England and Wales during 1986–90 and followed up to 1995.
Methods/design: Ethnic group was ascribed by a computer algorithm on the basis of the name. Incidence rates were derived from 1991 census population denominators for each ethnic group. One and five year relative survival rates were estimated by age, quintile of material deprivation, and ethnic group, using national mortality rates to estimate expected survival.
Main results: Age standardised incidence was 29% lower among South Asian women (40.5 per 100 000 per year) than among all other women (57.4 per 100 000). Five year age standardised relative survival was 70.3% (95%CI 65.2 to 75.4) for South Asian women and 66.7% (66.4 to 67.0) for other women. For both ethnic groups, survival was 8%–9% higher for women in the most affluent group than those in the most deprived group. In each deprivation category, however, survival was 3%–8% higher for South Asian women than other women.
Conclusions: This national study confirms that breast cancer incidence is substantially lower in South Asians than other women in England and Wales. It also provides some evidence that South Asian women diagnosed up to 1990 had higher breast cancer survival than other women in England and Wales, both overall and in each category of deprivation.
doi:10.1136/jech.2004.030965
PMCID: PMC1733081  PMID: 15831690
15.  Relationships of thoracic aortic wall calcification to cardiovascular risk factors: the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis 
American heart journal  2008;155(4):765-771.
Background
The aim of this paper is to determine the relationships between aortic wall calcification (AWC) including ascending and descending thoracic aortic calcification and gender, race/ethnicity, age, and traditional risk factors. Allison et al and Post et al previously described the relationship of noted risk factors and AWC as detected by computed tomography (CT) in smaller cohorts. We performed a cross-sectional study to determine which of these variables are independently associated with thoracic calcium.
Methods
The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) study population included a population based sample of four ethnic groups (12% Chinese, 38% White, 22% Hispanic and 28% black) of 6814 women and men ages 45–84 years old. CT scans were performed for all participants. We quantified AWC, which ranged from the lower edge of the pulmonary artery bifurcation to the cardiac apex. Multivariable logistic regression was used to evaluate relationships between AWC and measured cardiovascular risk factors.
Results
Overall prevalence of AWC was 28.0%. In the ethnic groups, prevalence of AWC was 32.4% Chinese, 32.4% White, 24.9% Hispanic and 22.4% Black. All age categories of females had a higher prevalence of thoracic calcification than males (total age prevalence: 29.1% and 26.8%, respectively). AWC were most strongly associated with hypertension and current smoking. In addition, diabetes, hypercholesterolemia, high LDL, low HDL, family history of heart attack and high CRP were all associated with increased AWC. Overall p-value for difference between genders for prevalence of AWC = 0.037. Overall p-value for difference between race for prevalence of AWC <0.001. The only significant gender differences distributed by race were for Chinese (p=0.035) and Hispanic (p=0.042) participants.
Conclusions
Risk factors for aortic calcification were similar to cardiovascular risk factors in a large population based cohort. Suprisingly, AWC was similar for the Chinese and white populations despite the fact that MESA demonstrated that coronary caclium was more prevalent in the white population. Further studies are needed to investigate whether aortic calcification is a risk factor for coronary disease, independent of coronary calcification.
doi:10.1016/j.ahj.2007.11.019
PMCID: PMC2323597  PMID: 18371491
16.  Sex Differences in Subclinical Atherosclerosis by Race/Ethnicity in the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis 
American Journal of Epidemiology  2011;174(2):165-172.
Sex differences in cardiovascular disease mortality are more pronounced among non-Hispanic whites than other racial/ethnic groups, but it is unknown whether this variation is present in the earlier subclinical stages of disease. The authors examined racial/ethnic variation in sex differences in coronary artery calcification (CAC) and carotid intimal media thickness at baseline in 2000–2002 among participants (n = 6,726) in the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis using binomial and linear regression. Models adjusted for risk factors in several stages: age, traditional cardiovascular disease risk factors, behavioral risk factors, psychosocial factors, and adult socioeconomic position. Women had a lower prevalence of any CAC and smaller amounts of CAC when present than men in all racial/ethnic groups. Sex differences in the prevalence of CAC were more pronounced in non-Hispanic whites than in African Americans and Chinese Americans after adjustment for traditional cardiovascular disease risk factors, and further adjustment for behavioral factors, psychosocial factors, and socioeconomic position did not modify these results (for race/sex, Pinteraction = 0.047). Similar patterns were observed for amount of CAC among adults with CAC. Racial/ethnic variation in sex differences for carotid intimal media thickness was less pronounced. In conclusion, coronary artery calcification is differentially patterned by sex across racial/ethnic groups.
doi:10.1093/aje/kwr088
PMCID: PMC3167681  PMID: 21685409
calcification, physiologic; continental population groups; coronary vessels; sex; social class
17.  Prevalence and Risk Factors for Epiretinal Membranes in a Multi-Ethnic United States Population 
Ophthalmology  2010;118(4):694-699.
Purpose
To describe the prevalence of and risk factors for epiretinal membrane (ERM) in a multi-ethnic population and to evaluate possible racial/ethnic differences.
Design
Cross-sectional study.
Participants
Participants of the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA), examined at the second visit of the MESA when retinal photography was performed.
Methods
Data on 5960 participants aged 45 to 84 years from MESA, including white, blacks, Hispanic and Chinese from six United States communities, were analysed. ERM was assessed from digital non-stereoscopic fundus photographs and defined as cellophane macular reflex (CMR) without retinal folds or pre-retinal macular fibrosis (PMF) with retinal folds. Risk factors were assessed from standardized interviews, clinical examinations, and laboratory investigations.
Main outcome measures
ERM prevalence by ethnic/racial group, and risk factors associated with ERM.
Results
The prevalence of any ERM was 28.9%, of which 25.1% were CMR and 3.8% were PMF. The prevalence of ERM was significantly higher in Chinese (39.0%), compared to Hispanics (29.3%), whites (27.5%), and blacks (26.2%), p<0.001. In multivariable models, increasing age (odds ratio [OR] 1.19, 95% confidence intervals [CI], 1.06, 1.34, per year increase in age), diabetes (OR 1.92, 95% CI, 1.39, 2.65) and hypercholesterolemia (OR 1.33, 95% CI, 1.04, 1.69) were significantly associated with CMR.
Conclusions
This study showed that ERM was significantly more common in Chinese persons compared to whites, blacks and Hispanics. Risk factors for epiretinal membrane were increasing age, presence of diabetes and hypercholesterolemia.
doi:10.1016/j.ophtha.2010.08.009
PMCID: PMC3070851  PMID: 21035863
18.  Perceived racial/ethnic discrimination, smoking and alcohol consumption in the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) 
Preventive medicine  2010;51(3-4):307-312.
Objective
To examine the association of perceived racial/ethnic discrimination with smoking and alcohol consumption in adults participating in the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis.
Methods
Data on 6,680 black, Chinese, Hispanic and white adults aged 45 to 84 years of age recruited from Illinois, New York, Maryland, North Carolina, Minnesota and California during 2000 and 2002 were used for this analysis. Logistic regression was used to estimate the association of perceived racial/ethnic discrimination with smoking status and alcohol consumption for each racial/ethnic group separately.
Results
Blacks were more likely to experience racial/ethnic discrimination (43%) than Hispanics (19%), Chinese participants (10%) or whites (4%, P<0.0001). In the fully-adjusted model, blacks reporting racial/ethnic discrimination had 34% and 51% greater odds of reporting smoking and drinking, respectively, than blacks who did not report racial/ethnic discrimination. Hispanics reporting racial/ethnic discrimination had 62% greater odds of heavy drinking. Whites reporting racial/ethnic discrimination had 88% greater odds of reporting being current smokers than whites who did not report racial/ethnic discrimination.
Conclusions
Our findings suggest that the experience of discrimination is associated with greater prevalence of unhealthy behaviors. Specifically, the use of smoking and alcohol may be patterned by experience of discrimination.
doi:10.1016/j.ypmed.2010.05.017
PMCID: PMC2939242  PMID: 20609433
Racial/ethnic discrimination; discrimination; smoking; alcohol; blacks; Hispanics; Chinese; whites
19.  Association of Acculturation Levels and Prevalence of Diabetes in the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA)  
Diabetes Care  2008;31(8):1621-1628.
OBJECTIVE—The prevalence of type 2 diabetes among Hispanic and Asian Americans is increasing. These groups are largely comprised of immigrants who may be undergoing behavioral and lifestyle changes associated with development of diabetes. We studied the association between acculturation and diabetes in a population sample of 708 Mexican-origin Hispanics, 547 non–Mexican-origin Hispanics, and 737 Chinese participants in the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA).
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS—Diabetes was defined as fasting glucose ≥126 mg/dl and/or use of antidiabetic medications. An acculturation score was calculated for all participants using nativity, years living in the U.S., and language spoken at home. The score ranged from 0 to 5 (0 = least acculturated and 5 = most acculturated). Relative risk regression was used to estimate the association between acculturation and diabetes.
RESULTS—For non–Mexican-origin Hispanics, the prevalence of diabetes was positively associated with acculturation score, after adjustment for sociodemographics. The prevalence of diabetes was significantly higher among the most acculturated versus the least acculturated non–Mexican-origin Hispanics (prevalence ratio 2.49 [95% CI 1.14−5.44]); the higher the acculturation score is, the higher the prevalence of diabetes (P for trend 0.059). This relationship between acculturation and diabetes was partly attenuated after adjustment for BMI or diet. Diabetes prevalence was not related to acculturation among Chinese or Mexican-origin Hispanics.
CONCLUSIONS—Among non–Mexican-origin Hispanics in MESA, greater acculturation is associated with higher diabetes prevalence. The relation is at least partly mediated by BMI and diet. Acculturation is a factor that should be considered when predictors of diabetes in racial/ethnic groups are examined.
doi:10.2337/dc07-2182
PMCID: PMC2494621  PMID: 18458142
20.  BLACK PRETERM BIRTH RISK IN NON-BLACK NEIGHBORHOODS: EFFECTS OF HISPANIC, ASIAN, AND NON-HISPANIC WHITE ETHNIC DENSITIES 
Annals of epidemiology  2011;21(8):10.1016/j.annepidem.2011.04.008.
Purpose
Studies of ethnic density and health in the United States have documented poorer health outcomes in black compared to non-black neighborhoods, but few studies have considered the identities of the non-black populations.
Methods
New York City birth records from 1995 through 2003 and a spatial measure of ethnic density were used to examine preterm birth risks among non-Hispanic black women associated with non-Hispanic white, Hispanic, Asian, and non-Hispanic black neighborhood densities. Logistic regression models were used to estimate the effect on black preterm birth risks of replacing white neighbors with Hispanic, Asian, and black neighbors. Risk differences were computed for changes from the 10th to the 90th percentiles of ethnic density.
Results
Increasing Hispanic density was associated with reduced preterm birth risks among non-Hispanic black women, especially if the black women were foreign-born (RD=−19.1 per 1,000 births; 95% CI: −28.6, −9.5). Estimates for increasing Asian density were null. Increasing black density was associated with increasing black preterm birth risk, with a threshold at higher levels of black density.
Conclusions
The low risks of preterm birth among foreign-born non-Hispanic black women in majority-Hispanic neighborhoods may be related to protective psychosocial or nutritional factors in Hispanic neighborhoods.
doi:10.1016/j.annepidem.2011.04.008
PMCID: PMC3883136  PMID: 21737050
21.  Association of kidney function with inflammatory and procoagulant markers in a diverse cohort: A cross-sectional analysis from the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) 
BMC Nephrology  2008;9:9.
Background
Prior studies using creatinine-based estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) have found limited associations between kidney function and markers of inflammation. Using eGFR and cystatin C, a novel marker of kidney function, the authors investigated the association of kidney function with multiple biomarkers in a diverse cohort.
Methods
The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis consists of 6,814 participants of white, African-American, Hispanic, and Chinese descent, enrolled from 2000–2002 from six U.S. communities. Measurements at the enrollment visit included serum creatinine, cystatin C, and six inflammatory and procoagulant biomarkers. Creatinine-based eGFR was estimated using the four-variable Modification of Diet in Renal Disease equation, and chronic kidney disease was defined by an eGFR < 60 mL/min/1.73 m2.
Results
Adjusted partial correlations between cystatin C and all biomarkers were statistically significant: C-reactive protein (r = 0.08), interleukin-6 (r = 0.16), tumor necrosis factor-α soluble receptor 1 (TNF-αR1; r = 0.75), intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (r = 0.21), fibrinogen (r = 0.14), and factor VIII (r = 0.11; two-sided p < 0.01 for all). In participants without chronic kidney disease, higher creatinine-based eGFR was associated only with higher TNF-αR1 levels.
Conclusion
In a cohort characterized by ethnic diversity, cystatin C was directly associated with multiple procoagulant and inflammatory markers. Creatinine-based eGFR had similar associations with these biomarkers among subjects with chronic kidney disease.
doi:10.1186/1471-2369-9-9
PMCID: PMC2533297  PMID: 18681974
22.  Community and Individual Race/Ethnicity and Home Health Care Use among Elderly Persons in the United States* 
Health services research  2010;45(5 Pt 1):1251-1267.
OBJECTIVE
To investigate whether the interaction between individual race/ethnicity and community racial/ethnic composition is associated with health-related home care use among elderly persons in the United States.
DATA SOURCES
A nationally representative sample of community-dwelling elders aged 65+ from the 2000-2006 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (N=23,792) linked to block group-level racial/ethnic information from the 2000 Decennial Census.
DESIGN
We estimated the likelihood of informal and formal home health care use for four racial/ethnic elderly groups (non-Hispanic (NH) Whites, NH-Blacks, NH-Asians, and Hispanics) living in communities with different racial/ethnic compositions.
PRINCIPAL FINDINGS
NH-Asian and Hispanic elders living in block groups with ≥25% of residents being NH-Asian or Hispanic, respectively, were more likely to use informal home health care than their counterparts in other block groups. No such effect was apparent for formal home health care.
CONCLUSIONS
NH-Asian and Hispanic elders are more likely to use informal home care if they live in communities with a higher proportion of residents who share their race/ethnicity. A better understanding of how informal care is provided in different communities may inform policy makers concerned with promoting informal home care, supporting informal caregivers, or providing formal home care as a substitute or supplement to informal care.
doi:10.1111/j.1475-6773.2010.01135.x
PMCID: PMC2939174  PMID: 20662950
elderly; home care; race & ethnicity; MEPS
23.  A multi-ethnic breast cancer case–control study in New Zealand: evidence of differential risk patterns 
Cancer Causes & Control  2012;24(1):135-152.
Purpose
To investigate whether the relationships between established risk factors and breast cancer risk differ between three ethnic groups in New Zealand, namely Māori, Pacific, and non-Māori/non-Pacific women.
Methods
The study is a multi-ethnic, age-, and ethnicity-matched population-based case–control study of breast cancer in women. Women with a primary, invasive breast cancer registered on the New Zealand Cancer Registry between 1 April 2005 and 30 April 2006, and Māori or Pacific women diagnosed to 30 April 2007 were eligible. Control women were identified from the New Zealand Electoral Roll, stratified by ethnicity, then frequency matched on age to the cases. Logistic regression was used to estimate odds ratios (OR) and 95 % confidence intervals (CI) between exposures and breast cancer risk in three ethnic groups separately. Likelihood ratio tests were used to test for modification of the effects by ethnicity. Post-stratification weighting of the controls was used to account for differential non-response by deprivation category.
Results
The study comprised 1,799 cases (302 Māori, 70 Pacific, 1,427 non-Māori/non-Pacific) and 2,543 controls (746 Māori, 194 Pacific, 1,603 non-Māori/non-Pacific), based on self-identified ethnicity. Māori women were more likely to have ER and PR positive breast cancer compared to other ethnicities. There were marked differences in exposure prevalence between ethnicities and some differing patterns of risk factors for breast cancer between the three main ethnic groups. Of interest was the strong relationship between number of children and lower breast cancer risk in Pacific women (OR for 4 or more vs. 1 child OR 0.13, 95 % CI 0.05–0.35) and a higher risk of breast cancer associated with smoking (OR 1.76, 95 % CI 1.25–2.48) and binge drinking (5 or more vs. 1–2 drinks per occasion, OR 1.55, 95 % CI 1.07–2.26) in Māori women. Some of the documented results were attenuated following post-stratification weighting.
Conclusions
The findings of this study need to be interpreted with caution, given the possibility of selection bias due to low response rates among some groups of women. Reducing the burden of breast cancer in New Zealand is likely to require different approaches for different ethnic groups.
doi:10.1007/s10552-012-0099-3
PMCID: PMC3528952  PMID: 23179663
Breast cancer; Multi-ethnic; Case–control study; New Zealand
24.  Ethnic differences in Aortic Valve Thickness and Related Clinical Factors 
American heart journal  2010;159(4):698-704.
Background
Prior studies suggest that the causes of calcific aortic valve (AV) disease involve chronic inflammation, lipoprotein levels, and calcium metabolism, all of which may differ among race-ethnic groups. We sought to determine whether AV thickness differs by race-ethnicity in a large multi-ethnic population-based cohort.
Methods
The Northern Manhattan Study (NOMAS) includes stroke-free community-based Hispanic (57%), non-Hispanic black (22%), and non-Hispanic white (21%) participants. The relation between AV thickness on transthoracic echocardiography and clinical risk factors for atherosclerosis was evaluated among 2085 participants using polytomous logistic regression models. AV thickness was graded in three categories (normal, mild, and moderate/severe) based on leaflet thickening and calcification.
Results
Mild AV thickness was present in 44.4% and moderate/severe thickness in 5.7% of the cohort, with the lowest frequency of moderate/severe thickness seen particularly among Hispanic females. In multivariate models adjusting for age, sex, race-ethnicity, body mass index, hypertension, coronary artery disease, blood glucose, and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, Hispanics had significantly less moderate/severe AV thickness (odds ratio (OR) 0.43, 95% confidence interval (95% CI) 0.25 to 0.73) than non-Hispanic whites. Men were almost 2-fold as likely to have moderate/severe AV thickness compared to women (OR 1.96, 95% CI 1.24 to 3.10).
Conclusions
In this large multi-ethnic population-based cohort, there were ethnic differences in the degree of AV thickness. Hispanic ethnicity was strongly protective against AV thickness. This effect was not related to traditional risk factors, suggesting that unmeasured factors related to Hispanic ethnicity and AV thickness may be responsible.
doi:10.1016/j.ahj.2009.12.031
PMCID: PMC2852575  PMID: 20362732
25.  Community and Individual Race/Ethnicity and Home Health Care Use among Elderly Persons in the United States 
Health Services Research  2010;45(5 Pt 1):1251-1267.
Objective
To investigate whether the interaction between individual race/ethnicity and community racial/ethnic composition is associated with health-related home care use among elderly persons in the United States.
Data Sources
A nationally representative sample of community-dwelling elders aged 65+ from the 2000 to 2006 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (N=23,792) linked to block group-level racial/ethnic information from the 2000 Decennial Census.
Design
We estimated the likelihood of informal and formal home health care use for four racial/ethnic elderly groups (non-Hispanic [NH] whites, NH-blacks, NH-Asians, and Hispanics) living in communities with different racial/ethnic compositions.
Principal Findings
NH-Asian and Hispanic elders living in block groups with ≥25 percent of residents being NH-Asian or Hispanic, respectively, were more likely to use informal home health care than their counterparts in other block groups. No such effect was apparent for formal home health care.
Conclusions
NH-Asian and Hispanic elders are more likely to use informal home care if they live in communities with a higher proportion of residents who share their race/ethnicity. A better understanding of how informal care is provided in different communities may inform policy makers concerned with promoting informal home care, supporting informal caregivers, or providing formal home care as a substitute or supplement to informal care.
doi:10.1111/j.1475-6773.2010.01135.x
PMCID: PMC2939174  PMID: 20662950
Elderly; home care; race and ethnicity; MEPS

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