(HealthDay News) –For patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D), having a genetic predisposition towards the disease is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD).

Qibin Qi, PhD, from the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, and colleagues analyzed data from 1,012 men and 1,310 women with T2D from the Health Professionals Follow-up Study and Nurses’ Health Study, including 677 with CVD and 1,645 control subjects without CVD. On the basis of 36 established independent diabetes-predisposing variants, a genetic predisposition score (GPS) was calculated.

The researchers found that each additional diabetes-risk allele in the GPS correlated with a 3% elevated risk of CVD (odds ratio [OR], 1.03; 95% confidence interval, 1.00–1.06). By comparing extreme quartiles of the GPS, the OR was 1.47 for CVD risk (P for trend = 0.01). There was a significant positive association for GPS with hemoglobin A1c levels.

“In conclusion, we found that the genetic predisposition to T2D was significantly associated with an increased risk of CVD in patients with T2D,” the authors write. “Further studies are needed to examine the relationship among the genetic predisposition to T2D, glycemic control, and CVD.”

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