Metabolic syndrome (MetS) is a common phenotype, affecting about 24% of the US population. It is associated with an increased risk for type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Although there is no universally accepted definition for MetS, affected individuals commonly have a cluster of features, including abdominal obesity, hypertension, dyslipidemia, and dysglycemia. Recently, there has been extensive interest in potential genetic contributions to MetS. At present, no single gene or cluster of genes has been consistently replicated for MetS among different populations, likely due to the complex interplay between gene and environment necessary for expression of this phenotype. We review recent studies regarding the genetic contributions to MetS.