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Stroke Risk in the NAS-NRC Twin Registry

This study has been completed.
Information provided by:
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) Identifier:
First received: May 25, 2000
Last updated: June 23, 2005
Last verified: March 2005

To investigate stroke risk using the National Academy of Sciences Twin Registry.

Cardiovascular Diseases
Cerebrovascular Accident
Myocardial Infarction
Coronary Disease

Study Type: Observational

Further study details as provided by National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI):

Study Start Date: September 1991
Estimated Study Completion Date: September 1993
Detailed Description:


The epidemiology and common risk factors for cerebrovascular disease have been well documented by cross-sectional and longitudinal population surveys. These studies have generally involved unrelated individuals with little information on family history. Despite a significant role in cardiovascular risk, few studies have investigated familial contributions to stroke risk, and its importance was unknown. Recognition of the importance of hereditary influences on vascular disease of the heart has contributed, in large part, to the current emphasis on the molecular biology of vascular disease and a more balanced view that recognized both genetic and environmental influences on coronary artery disease. Twin studies represented a simple and uniquely powerful tool for analyzing genetic and environmental contributions to complex human phenotypes. Studies of cardiovascular risk have shown the importance of heritable factors, and it was hypothesized that similar genetic factors played a role in development of stroke.

With improved understanding of stroke risk factors (both genetic and environmental), early prevention measures can begin in high risk groups as early as childhood, an approach already applied to cardiovascular disease. Demonstration of a significant heritable risk for stroke should also prompt and help direct, further investigation into the molecular mechanisms of the genetic influences on stroke and may identify new approaches for stroke prevention and treatment, as it has for cardiovascular disease.


The twins have been surveyed periodically over the past two decades, most recently in 1985. Information obtained included questions on vascular risk factors, myocardial disease, and stroke. An analysis was made on an estimation of heritable risk. A comparison was made between monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twins. If genes influenced the prevalence of stroke, there should have been more MZ twin pairs with stroke. Measures of concordance and heritability were used to estimate the size of the genetic contribution. Secondary analyses focussed on compound risk factors (e.g. hypertension and diabetes), less well documented risk factors (e.g. diet and personality), and the heritability of individual stroke risk factors.


Genders Eligible for Study:   Male
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

No eligibility criteria

  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT00005413

Sponsors and Collaborators
Investigator: Lawrence Brass Yale University
  More Information

Publications: Identifier: NCT00005413     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 4331
Study First Received: May 25, 2000
Last Updated: June 23, 2005
Health Authority: United States: Federal Government

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Cardiovascular Diseases
Cerebral Infarction
Coronary Artery Disease
Coronary Disease
Myocardial Infarction
Arterial Occlusive Diseases
Brain Diseases
Brain Infarction
Brain Ischemia
Central Nervous System Diseases
Cerebrovascular Disorders
Heart Diseases
Myocardial Ischemia
Nervous System Diseases
Pathologic Processes
Vascular Diseases processed this record on November 25, 2014