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Am Heart J. 1991 Jun;121(6 Pt 1):1743-9.

The inheritance of left ventricular structure and function assessed by imaging and Doppler echocardiography.

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Department of Pathophysiology, Faculty of Medicine, Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium.


The heritability of left ventricular structure and function was studied in 53 pairs of monozygotic and dizygotic twins, aged 18 to 31 years, by means of M-mode and Doppler echocardiography. A significant fraction of the phenotypic variances of left ventricular wall thickness was explained by genetic variance. For the left ventricular internal dimension, however, no genetic effect was found after correction for body weight. After appropriate adjustment a genetic component of 32% was found for aortic peak flow velocity, 55% for stroke distance, and 47% for minute distance. The early and late diastolic peak flow velocities at the mitral valve showed a genetic component estimated at 43% and 26%, respectively. The inheritance of the late/early diastolic peak flow velocity ratio was estimated at 53%. In conclusion, these data suggest a significant genetic component for left ventricular structural features but not for cavity dimension. A significant influence of heredity was detected for left ventricular inflow and outflow characteristics.

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