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Coronary heart disease (CHD) is a complex disorder constituting a major health problem in Western societies. To assess the genetic background of CHD, we performed a genomewide linkage scan in two study samples from the genetically isolated population of Finland. An initial study sample consisted of family material from the northeastern part of Finland, settled by a small number of founders approximately 300 years ago. A second study sample originated from the southwestern region of Finland, settled approximately 2,000 years ago. Families were ascertained through probands exhibiting premature CHD, defined as >50% stenosis of at least two coronary arteries at a young age, as verified by coronary angiography. Both study samples and the pooled data set provided evidence for linkage in two chromosomal regions. A region on chromosome 2q21.1-22 yielded two-point LOD scores of 3.2, 1.9, and 3.7, in the affected sib-pair (ASP) analyses of the northeastern, southwestern, and pooled study samples. The corresponding multipoint maximum-likelihood scores (MLSs) for these three study samples were 2.4, 1.3, and 3.0. In addition, a region on chromosome Xq23-26 resulted in two-point LOD scores of 1.9, 3.5, and 2.9 and in multipoint MLSs of 3.4, 3.1, and 2.5, respectively. In conclusion, this study identifies two loci likely to contribute to premature CHD: one on chromosome 2q21.1-22 and another on chromosome Xq23-26.

Original publication




Journal article


Am J Hum Genet

Publication Date





1481 - 1493


Age of Onset, Aged, Chromosome Mapping, Chromosomes, Human, Pair 2, Coronary Disease, Finland, Founder Effect, Genetic Heterogeneity, Genetic Markers, Humans, Likelihood Functions, Lod Score, Matched-Pair Analysis, Middle Aged, Nuclear Family, Software, X Chromosome