"Knowing these gene-drug combinations will help doctors prescribe medication that an individual will be most likely to respond to," said lead author Sharon Kardia, Ph.D., associate professor and director of the University of Michigan Public Health Genetics Program.
"This is an important finding given the tremendous variation among people's responses to blood pressure-lowering medications," added co-author Stephen T. Turner, M.D., professor of medicine in the Division of Hypertension at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. "Doctors and patients have to go through often frustrating trial-and-error periods to find the best medication."
Investigators are conducting these studies as part of the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute's Family Blood Pressure Program, a large collaborative research effort aimed at identifying genes that contribute to high blood pressure. The study involved 1,162 hypertensive white men and women from Rochester, Minn. Hypertension is systolic blood pressure (the top number in a blood pressure reading) of 140 millimeters of mercury (mmHg) or higher, or diastolic pressure (bottom number) of 90 mmHg or higher. Pre-hypertension is 120-139/80-89 mmHg. The researchers noted what drugs the study participants were taking to control their hypertension and measured their blood pressure after treatment. The researchers also screened participants for specific genes shown in previous studies to affect blood pressure, including the adducin 2 (ADD2) and solute-carrier 9A (SLC9A2).
They found ADD2 and SLC9A2 were associated with blood pressure. The researchers identified a single nucleotide polymorphism, or SNP, in ADD2 that was associated with lower average