Genetic variation at the PCSK9 locus moderately lowers low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels, but does not significantly lower vascular disease risk in an elderly population

Eliana Polisecki, Inga Peter, Michele Robertson, Alex D. McMahon, Ian Ford, Christopher Packard, James Shepherd, J. Wouter Jukema, Gerard J. Blauw, Rudi G.J. Westendorp, Anton J.M. de Craen, Stella Trompet, Brendan M. Buckley, Michael B. Murphy, Jose M. Ordovas, Ernst J. Schaefer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Scopus citations

Abstract

Caucasian carriers of the T allele at R46L in the proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9 (PCSK9) locus have been reported to have 15% lower low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol (C) levels and 47% lower coronary heart disease (CHD) risk. Our objective was to examine two PCSK9 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), R46L and E670G, in 5783 elderly participants in Prospective Study of Pravastatin in the Elderly at Risk (PROSPER), of whom 43% had a history of vascular disease at baseline, and who were randomized to pravastatin or placebo with followup. In this population 3.5% were carriers of the T allele at R46L, and these subjects had significantly (p < 0.001) lower levels of LDL C (mean, -10%), no difference in LDL C lowering response to pravastatin, and a non-significant 19% unadjusted and 9% adjusted decreased risk of vascular disease at baseline, with no on trial effect. Moreover, 6.0% were carriers of the G allele at E670G with no significant relationships with baseline LDL C, response to pravastatin, or vascular disease risk being observed. Our data support the concept that the rare allele of the R46L SNP at the PCSK9 locus significantly lowers LDL C, but does not greatly reduce CHD risk in an elderly population with a high prevalence of cardiovascular disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)95-101
Number of pages7
JournalAtherosclerosis
Volume200
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2008
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Coronary heart disease (CHD)
  • Elderly
  • Genetics
  • Low-density lipoproteins (LDL)
  • Proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9 serine protease (PCSK9)
  • Statins
  • Vascular disease

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