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Hypertension. 2015 Feb;65(2):463-70. doi: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.114.04494. Epub 2014 Nov 24.

Inactive matrix Gla protein is causally related to adverse health outcomes: a Mendelian randomization study in a Flemish population.

Author information

1
From the Studies Coordinating Centre, Research Unit Hypertension and Cardiovascular Epidemiology (Y.-P.L., Y.-M.G., L.T., T.P., Z.-Y.Z., L.J., Y.J., T.K., J.A.S.) and the Centre for Molecular and Vascular Biology (P.V.), KU Leuven Department of Cardiovascular Sciences, University of Leuven, Leuven, Belgium; VitaK (M.H.J.K., C.V.) and Department of Pharmacology (H.A.S.), Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands; Genomics and Bioinformatics Platform at Filarete Foundation, Department of Health Sciences and Graduate School of Nephrology, Division of Nephrology, San Paolo Hospital, University of Milan, Italy (E.S., C.B., D.C.); and Division of Nephrology and Dialysis, IRCCS San Raffaele Scientific Institute (L.C., S.D.C.) and School of Nephrology, University Vita-Salute San Raffaele (P.M.), Milan, Italy.
2
From the Studies Coordinating Centre, Research Unit Hypertension and Cardiovascular Epidemiology (Y.-P.L., Y.-M.G., L.T., T.P., Z.-Y.Z., L.J., Y.J., T.K., J.A.S.) and the Centre for Molecular and Vascular Biology (P.V.), KU Leuven Department of Cardiovascular Sciences, University of Leuven, Leuven, Belgium; VitaK (M.H.J.K., C.V.) and Department of Pharmacology (H.A.S.), Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands; Genomics and Bioinformatics Platform at Filarete Foundation, Department of Health Sciences and Graduate School of Nephrology, Division of Nephrology, San Paolo Hospital, University of Milan, Italy (E.S., C.B., D.C.); and Division of Nephrology and Dialysis, IRCCS San Raffaele Scientific Institute (L.C., S.D.C.) and School of Nephrology, University Vita-Salute San Raffaele (P.M.), Milan, Italy. jan.staessen@med.kuleuven.be ja.staessen@maastrichtuniversity.nl.

Abstract

Matrix Gla-protein is a vitamin K-dependent protein that strongly inhibits arterial calcification. Vitamin K deficiency leads to production of inactive nonphosphorylated and uncarboxylated matrix Gla protein (dp-ucMGP). The risk associated with dp-ucMGP in the population is unknown. In a Flemish population study, we measured circulating dp-ucMGP at baseline (1996-2011), genotyped MGP, recorded adverse health outcomes until December 31, 2012, and assessed the multivariable-adjusted associations of adverse health outcomes with dp-ucMGP. We applied a Mendelian randomization analysis using MGP genotypes as instrumental variables. Among 2318 participants, baseline dp-ucMGP averaged 3.61 μg/L. Over 14.1 years (median), 197 deaths occurred, 58 from cancer and 70 from cardiovascular disease; 85 participants experienced a coronary event. The risk of death and non-cancer mortality curvilinearly increased (P≤0.008) by 15.0% (95% confidence interval, 6.9-25.3) and by 21.5% (11.1-32.9) for a doubling of the nadir (1.43 and 0.97 μg/L, respectively). With higher dp-ucMGP, cardiovascular mortality log-linearly increased (hazard ratio for dp-ucMGP doubling, 1.14 [1.01-1.28]; P=0.027), but coronary events log-linearly decreased (0.93 [0.88-0.99]; P=0.021). dp-ucMGP levels were associated (P≤0.001) with MGP variants rs2098435, rs4236, and rs2430692. For non-cancer mortality and coronary events (P≤0.022), but not for total and cardiovascular mortality (P≥0.13), the Mendelian randomization analysis suggested causality. Higher dp-ucMGP predicts total, non-cancer and cardiovascular mortality, but lower coronary risk. For non-cancer mortality and coronary events, these associations are likely causal.

KEYWORDS:

Mendelian randomization; matrix Gla protein; mortality

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