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1.  Investigation of Genetic Disturbances in Oxygen Sensing and Erythropoietin Signaling Pathways in Cases of Idiopathic Erythrocytosis 
Background. Idiopathic erythrocytosis is the term reserved for cases with unexplained origins of abnormally increased hemoglobin after initial investigation. Extensive molecular investigation of genes associated with oxygen sensing and erythropoietin signaling pathways, in those cases, usually involves sequencing all of their exons and it may be time consuming. Aim. To perform a strategy for molecular investigation of patients with idiopathic erythrocytosis regarding oxygen sensing and erythropoietin signaling pathways. Methods. Samples of patients with idiopathic erythrocytosis were evaluated for the EPOR, VHL, PHD2, and HIF-2α genes using bidirectional sequencing of their hotspots. Results. One case was associated with HIF-2α mutation. Sequencing did not identify any pathogenic mutation in 4 of 5 cases studied in any of the studied genes. Three known nonpathogenic polymorphisms were found (VHL p.P25L, rs35460768; HIF-2α p.N636N, rs35606117; HIF-2α p.P579P, rs184760160). Conclusion. Extensive molecular investigation of cases considered as idiopathic erythrocytosis does not frequently change the treatment of the patient. However, we propose a complementary molecular investigation of those cases comprising genes associated with erythrocytosis phenotype to meet both academic and genetic counseling purposes.
doi:10.1155/2013/495724
PMCID: PMC3864166  PMID: 24363938
2.  Impact of diabetes mellitus on arterial stiffness in a representative sample of an urban Brazilian population 
Background
Independent of other cardiovascular (CV) risk factors, increased arterial stiffness has been established as a predictor of morbidity and mortality. The main aim of this study was to investigate the impact of diabetes on arterial stiffness in a representative sample of an urban Brazilian population plus Amerindians.
Methods
A total of 1,415 individuals from the general population were randomly selected plus 588 Amerindians from a native community in Brazil. In addition, a sub-sample of 380 individuals from the general population had 5-year follow-up data. Pulse wave velocity (PWV) was measured with a non-invasive automatic device (Complior, Colson; Garges les Gonesses, France) and increased arterial stiffness was defined as PWV ≥ 12 m/s.
Results
In the overall group, diabetic individuals had higher frequencies of increased arterial stiffness and hypertension. They also had higher values of PWV, body mass index, total cholesterol, triglycerides, systolic and diastolic blood pressures compared to non-diabetic individuals (p < 0.01). In an analysis stratified by hypertension, PWV values and increased arterial stiffness frequency were higher in diabetic individuals in both groups (hypertensive and non-hypertensive) (p < 0.05). Furthermore, higher risk for increased arterial stiffness was observed in the diabetic individuals from the overall group (OR = 2.27; CI = 1.47-3.52, p < 0.001) and from the hypertensive group (OR = 2.70; CI = 1.58-4.75, p < 0.001), adjusted for covariates. Regarding the ethnic stratification, diabetic individuals from Amerindian, White, and Mulatto (mixed-race) groups had higher PWV values and a greater frequency of increased arterial stiffness compared to non-diabetic individuals. Both diabetic and non-diabetic individuals had higher PWV values after 5 years. There was no significant difference in the 5-year PWV progression in diabetic compared to non-diabetic individuals.
Conclusions
These results confirm, in a sample of Brazilian population, that the presence of diabetes is associated with increased arterial stiffness and it may contribute in part to increased cardiovascular risk in diabetic patients.
doi:10.1186/1758-5996-5-45
PMCID: PMC3765236  PMID: 23965633
Arterial stiffness; Diabetes mellitus; Hypertension; Brazilian population
3.  Higher incidence of death in multi-vessel coronary artery disease patients associated with polymorphisms in chromosome 9p21 
Background
We investigated whether 9p21 polymorphisms are associated with cardiovascular events in a group of 611 patients enrolled in the Medical, Angioplasty or Surgery Study II (MASS II), a randomized trial comparing treatments for patients with coronary artery disease (CAD) and preserved left ventricular function.
Methods
The participants of the MASS II were genotyped for 9p21 polymorphisms (rs10757274, rs2383206, rs10757278 and rs1333049). Survival curves were calculated with the Kaplan–Meier method and compared with the log-rank statistic. We assessed the relationship between baseline variables and the composite end-point of death, death from cardiac causes and myocardial infarction using a Cox proportional hazards survival model.
Results
We observed significant differences between patients within each polymorphism genotype group for baseline characteristics. The frequency of diabetes was lower in patients carrying GG genotype for rs10757274, rs2383206 and rs10757278 (29.4%, 32.8%, 32.0%) compared to patients carrying AA or AG genotypes (49.1% and 39.2%, p = 0.01; 52.4% and 40.1%, p = 0.01; 47.8% and 37.9%, p = 0.04; respectively).
Significant differences in genotype frequencies between double and triple vessel disease patients were observed for the rs10757274, rs10757278 and rs1333049. Finally, there was a higher incidence of overall mortality in patients with the GG genotype for rs2383206 compared to patients with AA and AG genotypes (19.5%, 11.9%, 11.0%, respectively; p = 0.04). Moreover, the rs2383206 was still significantly associated with a 1.75-fold increased risk of overall mortality (p = 0.02) even after adjustment of a Cox multivariate model for age, previous myocardial infarction, diabetes, smoking and type of coronary anatomy.
Conclusions
Our data are in accordance to previous evidence that chromosome 9p21 genetic variation may constitute a genetic modulator in the cardiovascular system in different scenarios. In patients with established CAD, we observed an association between the rs2383206 and higher incidence of overall mortality and death from cardiac causes in patients with multi-vessel CAD.
doi:10.1186/1471-2261-12-61
PMCID: PMC3469382  PMID: 22856518
Coronary artery disease; Polymorphism; Genetics; Chromosome 9p21

Results 1-3 (3)