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Olle Melander

Principal investigator

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A genetic risk score for hypertension associates with the risk of ischemic stroke in a Swedish case-control study.


  • Cristiano Fava
  • Marketa Sjögren
  • Sandra Olsson
  • Håkan Lövkvist
  • Katarina Jood
  • Gunnar Engström
  • Bo Hedblad
  • Bo Norrving
  • Christina Jern
  • Arne Lindgren
  • Olle Melander

Summary, in English

Genetic risk scores (GRS), summing up the total effect of several single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in genes associated with either coronary risk or cardiovascular risk factors, have been tested for association with ischemic stroke with conflicting results. Recently an association was found between a GRS based on 29 SNPs discovered by genome-wide association studies and hypertension. The aim of our study was to investigate the possible association of the same GRS with ischemic stroke on top of other 'traditional risk factors', also testing its potential improvement in indices of discrimination and reclassification, in a Swedish case-control study. Twenty-nine SNPs were genotyped in 3677 stroke cases and 2415 controls included in the Lund Stroke Register (LSR), the Malmö Diet and Cancer (MDC) study and the Sahlgrenska Academy Study on Ischemic Stroke (SAHLSIS). The analysis was conducted in the combined sample, and separately for the three studies. After adjustment for hypertension, diabetes mellitus and smoking habits, the GRS was associated with ischemic stroke in the combined sample (OR (95% CI) 1.086 (1.029-1.147) per SD increase in the GRS P=0.003) with similar trends in all three samples: LSR (1.050 (0.967-1.140); P=0.25), MDC (1.168 (1.060-1.288); P=0.002) and SAHLSIS (1.124 (0.997-1.267); P=0.055). Measures of risk discrimination and reclassification improved marginally using the GRS. A blood pressure GRS is independently associated with ischemic stroke risk in three Swedish case-control studies, however, the effect size is low and adds marginally to prediction of stroke on top of traditional risk factors including hypertension.European Journal of Human Genetics advance online publication, 8 October 2014; doi:10.1038/ejhg.2014.212.


  • Cardiovascular Research - Hypertension
  • Neurology, Lund
  • Cardiovascular Research - Epidemiology
  • EXODIAB: Excellence in Diabetes Research in Sweden
  • EpiHealth: Epidemiology for Health

Publishing year







European Journal of Human Genetics





Document type

Journal article


Nature Publishing Group


  • Medical Genetics



Research group

  • Cardiovascular Research - Hypertension
  • Cardiovascular Research - Epidemiology


  • ISSN: 1476-5438