A major research study using data and DNA samples from The Preeclampsia Registry helps explain the connection between preeclampsia and heart disease. Entitled “Preeclampsia and Cardiomyopathy: Shared Genetics?” this paper was published in Circulation, a well-respected peer-reviewed medical journal published by the American Heart Association.
What made this research possible? You! Your ongoing involvement in The Preeclampsia Registry has enabled many other studies also underway. “We are sincerely grateful to the women and their families for playing such a pivotal role as we seek to find a cure,” said Alina Brewer, Registry Manager.
As you may know, women with a history of preeclampsia are at a two to eight times increased risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) later in life, however, it isn’t fully understood if preeclampsia causes CVD or if the conditions share common risk factors. This study demonstrates that gene variants related to certain types of heart disease, namely idiopathic and peripartum cardiomyopathy, are also associated with preeclampsia. Cardiomyopathy is a condition that makes it difficult for the heart to pump blood to the rest of the body.
This is the largest whole exome sequencing study done on a preeclampsia population. Researchers studied the DNA samples of 181 women with a history of preeclampsia from The Preeclampsia Registry. They conducted DNA sequencing on the samples, looked at variants in the 43 genes known to be associated with cardiomyopathy, and examined the resulting data. The results from The Preeclampsia Registry participants were compared with known results from two control, or comparison, groups.