Li Jin and colleagues at Fudan University in China now show that the reason some Asians have trouble responding to GTN is that 30–50% of this population possess an inactive mutant form of the gene known as ALDH2*2.
The study, which appears online on January 26 in advance of print publication in the February 2006 issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, examined a total of 111 Chinese coronary heart disease patients who were self-administering GTN under the tongue during acute attacks of angina. Eighty subjects (72%) reported pain relief that occurred in less than 10 minutes (responders) and the remainder had no pain relief (nonresponders).
The authors determined that the nonresponders tended to have the ALDH2*2 form of the gene, and they suggest that this genetic factor may warrant consideration when administering nitroglycerin to Asian patients.
TITLE: Mitochondrial aldehyde dehydrogenase-2 (ALDH2) Glu504Lys polymorphism contributes to the variation in efficacy of sublingual nitroglycerin
Fudan University, Shanghai, People's Republic of China
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