Maternal influence on blood pressure suggests involvement of mitochondrial DNA in the pathogenesis of hypertension: The Framingham Heart Study

Qiong Yang, Sung K. Kim, Fengzhu Sun, Jing Cui, Martin G. Larson, Ramachandran S. Vasan, Daniel Levy, Faina Schwartz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To investigate the contribution of the mitochondrial genome to hypertension and quantitative blood pressure (BP) phenotypes in the Framingham Heart Study cohort, a randomly ascertained, community-based sample. METHODS: Longitudinal BP values of 6421 participants (mean age, 53 years; 46% men) from 1593 extended families were used for analyses. In analyses of BP as a continuous trait, a variance components model with a variance component for maternal effects was used to estimate the mitochondrial heritability of the long-term average BP adjusted for age, sex, body mass index, and hypertension treatment. For analyses of BP as a categorical trait, a nonparametric test sensitive to excessive maternal inheritance was used to test for mitochondrial effect on long-term hypertension, defined as systolic BP of at least 140 mmHg or diastolic BP of at least 90 mmHg or use of antihypertensive medication in one-half or more of qualifying examinations. This test was based on 353 pedigrees comprised of 403 individuals informative for mitochondrial DNA contribution. RESULTS: The estimated fraction of hypertensive pedigrees potentially due to mitochondrial effects was 35.2% (95% confidence interval, 27-43%, P < 10). The mitochondrial heritabilities for multivariable-adjusted long-term average systolic BP and diastolic BP were, respectively, 5% (P < 0.02) and 4% (P = 0.11). CONCLUSION: Our data provide support for a maternal effect on hypertension status and quantitative systolic BP, consistent with mitochondrial influence. Additional studies are warranted to identify mitochondrial DNA variant(s) affecting BP.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2067-2073
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Hypertension
Volume25
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2007
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Blood pressure genetics
  • Maternal effect
  • Mitochondrial inheritance
  • Primary (essential) hypertension

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Physiology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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