Background: Preeclampsia is a hypertensive complication of pregnancy characterized by novel onset of hypertension after 20 weeks gestation, accompanied by proteinuria. Epidemiological evidence suggests that genetic susceptibility exists for preeclampsia; however, whether preeclampsia is the result of underlying genetic risk for essential hypertension has yet to be investigated. Based on the hypertensive state that is characteristic of preeclampsia, we aimed to determine if established genetic risk scores (GRSs) for hypertension and blood pressure are associated with preeclampsia.
Methods: Subjects consisted of 162 preeclamptic cases and 108 normotensive pregnant controls, all of Iowa residence. Subjects' DNA was extracted from buccal swab samples and genotyped on the Affymetrix Genome-wide Human SNP Array 6.0 (Affymetrix, Santa Clara, CA). Missing genotypes were imputed using MaCH and Minimac software. GRSs were calculated for hypertension, systolic blood pressure (SBP), diastolic blood pressure (DBP), and mean arterial pressure (MAP) using established genetic risk loci for each outcome. Regression analyses were performed to determine the association between GRS and risk of preeclampsia. These analyses were replicated in an independent US population of 516 cases and 1,097 controls of European ancestry.
Results: GRSs for hypertension, SBP, DBP, and MAP were not significantly associated with risk for preeclampsia (P > 0.189). The results of the replication analysis also yielded nonsignificant associations.
Conclusions: GRSs for hypertension and blood pressure are not associated with preeclampsia, suggesting that an underlying predisposition to essential hypertension is not on the causal pathway of preeclampsia.
Keywords: blood pressure; genetic epidemiology; genetic predisposition to disease; hypertension; maternal; preeclampsia; pregnancy..
© American Journal of Hypertension, Ltd 2015. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: email@example.com.