Professor George Miller from the Wolfson Institute at St Bartholemew's Hospital and a collaborator in the research said; 'In case anybody views this research as a boon for some smokers, let me say that our findings provide no quick fixes. Each year you continue to smoke you increase your risk of an event. There is no test widely available for this gene and, even if there were, doctors cannot treat you for having a gene. Smoking strongly increases the risk of lung cancer and our research showed that smokers were three times more likely to die from cancer than the non-smoking group. This risk was independent of the version Apo-E carried.'
'The best treatment for reducing all these risk factors is quite simple and we can do it ourselves. We just need to give up smoking.'
Professor Sir Charles George, Medical Director of the British Heart Foundation, said; 'This is an important piece of work in establishing the causes of coronary heart disease. I hope that the information gained from this study will help to motivate the many smokers who want to quit as well as helping us target smoking cessation advice to those most at risk.'
Smoking is the single most important cause of preventable disease and premature death in the UK. We know that kicking the habit can be hard, but everyone who stops smoking will see the health benefits, whether they have an inherited risk factor or not.