Science

Sudden Death Causing Gene Found

By Rodney Rafols , Mar 10, 2017 02:10 AM EST
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A new research has found and identified a gene that can cause sudden death to young people. This sudden death causing gene has been found and has been identified by a team of international researchers. The gene can be a cause of cardiac arrest even in healthy young people.

The gene is formally known as CDH2. The gene can make a person open to a genetic disorder which could then lead to cardiac arrest. The discovery of the gene has come about because of a collaboration among international researchers that began 15 years ago.

The team has been led by Bongani Mayosi, professor of Cardiology at the University of Cape Town and Groote Schuur Hospital. He is joined by researchers from the Italian Auxologico Institute of Milan and the University of Pavia. The genetic sequencing has been done by Dr. Guillaume Paré and a team from the Population Health Research Institute at McMaster University.

In Canada alone, there are 40,000 cases of cardiac arrest each year. Less than one in 10 survive cardiac arrest if it happens outside the hospital. An inherited form of arrhythmogenic right ventricle cardiomyopathy (ARVC) can cause sudden cardiac arrest in young people under 35, according to Science Daily.

What happens in ARVC is that fatty tissue replaces healthy heart tissue. This then leads to conditions of ventricular fibrillation or tachycardia. This can lead to unconsciousness and even death to people. Sudden death can be in just a few minutes without any intervention in the case of fibrillation.

The study has followed a South African family that has inherited ARVC for 20 years, as Eureka Alert reports. The researchers have sequenced the genome of two members of the family that are affected by ARVC. Through genetic sequencing, CDH2 has been found from among 13,000 genetic variants.

This finding has been solidified when the gene has been found from a person in another family. Finding the gene is important in order to know how ARVC works from a genetic level. This could then help in identifying people who are prone to ARVC, by identifying if the gene is present in them. The sudden death causing gene has been found with the research. Poor diet has been found to be the cause of heart disease and stroke in people.

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