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J Am Coll Cardiol. 2007 Apr 17;49(15):1589-99. Epub 2007 Apr 2.

Atherosclerosis: the path from genomics to therapeutics.

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Division of Hematology, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.


Recent rapid advances in genomic tools and techniques hold great promise for transforming the practice of cardiovascular medicine. Resources including the Human Genome Project and the International HapMap project, major technological advances in high-throughput genotyping and methods of statistical analysis, and methods for high-throughput gene expression and small molecule profiling allow researchers to confront issues that will fundamentally change the practice of cardiovascular medicine during the 21st century. Genomic, proteomic, and metabolomic studies of complex cardiovascular diseases such as atherosclerosis will bridge epidemiology and basic biology, and promise increased understanding of cardiovascular disease processes. Genetic approaches applied to atherosclerosis will continue to identify genes and pathways involved in the predisposition to and pathophysiology of atherosclerosis. Gene expression profiling refines our understanding of the dynamic nature of the atherosclerotic vascular wall and promises discovery and validation of targets for therapeutic intervention. Opportunities to translate genetic, genomic, proteomic, and metabolomic information into cardiovascular clinical practice have never been greater, but their fruition requires validation in large independent cohorts, achieved only through collaborative effort. Their continued success will depend on ongoing cooperation within the cardiovascular research community.

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