kings-collegeIn a new study led by King’s College London, researchers report that they have pinpointed a new genetic variant linked to stroke. A recent news release notes that the study was executed in three stages. The first of these stages encompassed a genome-wide association study (GWAS) in 2010 that spotlighted 23 independent genetic variants involved in coagulation.

Researchers say the second stage of the study focused on 23 variants in 4200 stroke and non-stroke cases from centers across Europe. The results indicate that a specific mutation on the ABO gene was significantly associated with stroke. During the third stage of the study, researchers reportedly used the MetaStroke cohort, a project of the International Stroke Genetics Consortium encompassing 8900 stroke cases recruited from centers in Europe, USA, and Australia, whose DNA has been collected and undergone GWA scan.

According to the results, researchers confirmed that a variant in the ABO blood type gene was linked to stroke, specifically to large vessel and cardioembolic stroke.

“The discovery of the association between this genetic variant and stroke identifies a new target for potential treatments, which could help reduce the risk of stroke in the future,” says Frances Williams, MD, lead author, senior lecturer, department of Twin Research and Genetic Epidemiology, King’s College London. “It is also significant that no association was found with small vessel disease, as this suggests that stroke subtypes involve different genetic mechanisms which emphasizes the need for individualized treatment,” Williams adds.

The study appears in the Annals of Neurology.

Source: King’s College London