WEEKLY UPDATE: August 30, 2019
SUMMARY: A genetic variant on chromosome 6 may be linked to dilated cardiomyopathy.
DESCRIPTION: Dilated cardiomyopathy accounts for one-third of all heart failure cases. It occurs when the heart can’t pump blood at a normal rate due to the enlarging and weakening of the left ventricle. The left ventricle is a chamber of the heart that is responsible for pumping blood throughout our circulatory system. This study examined 11,700 individuals of European descent and found a genetic variant on the shorter arm of chromosome 6 (6p21) that is associated with dilated cardiomyopathy. The variant may be linked to genes encoding proteins of the major histocompatibility complex. This complex plays a role in the immune system as it helps distinguish proteins produced by the body from proteins stemming from pathogens.
DID YOU KNOW? While you cannot prevent inherited cardiomyopathy, you can lower your risks for conditions that may lead to the disease. By regularly visiting your doctor, making healthy lifestyle changes, and taking prescribed medications, you may be able to reduce your risk or the severity of dilated cardiomyopathy. [SOURCE]