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ENGLEMED HEALTH NEWS

Alcohol genes point to stroke risk

Friday April 5th, 2019

Light and moderate drinking offers no protection against the risk of having a stroke, according to a pioneering genetic study published today.

Researchers concluded that every extra four units of alcohol drunk daily increased the risk of stroke by 35%.

The conclusions come from an Oxford University, UK, analysis of the Chinese population, using information about genes that have a strong influence on alcohol intake.

The study, involving more than 500,000 people showed that two genetic variants affected the likelihood among men of drinking alcohol by 50 times, making some people teetotal. The variants are rs671 and rs1229984.

The researchers could not find similar effects among women, who mostly do not drink alcohol in China.

The British researchers worked with Peking University and the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences on the project, reported in The Lancet.

Researcher Professor Zhengming Chen, from Oxford, said: “There are no protective effects of moderate alcohol intake against stroke. Even moderate alcohol consumption increases the chances of having a stroke.

"The findings for heart attack were less clear-cut, so we plan to collect more evidence.”

Fellow researcher Professor Liming Li, from Peking University, said: “Stroke is a major cause of death and disability. This large collaborative study has shown that stroke rates are increased by alcohol. This should help inform personal choices and public health strategies.”

Lancet 5 April 2019

http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(18)31772-0/fulltext

Tags: Asia | Drug & Alcohol Abuse | Genetics | Heart Health | UK News

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