Kardia Research Group (Genetics)

About the Kardia Lab

From its inception in 1995, the Genetic Epidemiology Network of Arteriopathy’s (GENOA) long-term objective was to elucidate the genetics of arteriosclerotic target organ complications of hypertension, including both atherosclerotic or “macrovascular” and arteriolosclerotic or "microvascular" complications involving the heart, brain, kidneys, and peripheral arteries. Three GENOA cohorts were originally ascertained through sibships in which at least 2 siblings had essential hypertension diagnosed prior to age 60 years. These include non-Hispanic White Americans from Rochester, MN (n =1583 at the 1st exam), African Americans from Jackson, MS (n =1854 at the 1st exam), and Mexican Americans from Starr County, TX (N=1817 at 1st exam). The consortium of investigators proposing this project have a long history of collaboration on the genetics of common cardiac, cerebral, renal, and peripheral arterial diseases. These studies have created a rich resource of biological samples (DNA, serum, urine) as well as demographic, anthropometric, environmental, clinical, biochemical, physiological, and genetic data for understanding the genetic predictors of diseases of the heart, brain, kidney, and peripheral arteries.

Genetic Epidemiology of Cardiovascular Disease

Coronary Artery Calcification
Coronary Artery Calcification (CAC) is a subclinical measure of coronary artery atherosclerosis. Our studies of CAC in the Genetic Epidemiology Network of Arteriopathy (GENOA) indicate that it is heritable and associated with variation in multiple genes.
Heart Failure
Cardiac hypertrophy is heritable and a clearly recognized risk factor for heart failure. Our studies and others have identified potential hypertrophy-associated SNPs in various heterogeneous populations and we are also trying to identify SNPs associated with heart failure mortality.
Rochester Family Heart Study
The overall objective of the Rochester Family Heart Study was to identify and characterize genetic variations that influence the risk of cardiovascular disease and hypertension in the general population of Rochester, MN.