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Sorting out sortilin

Aninternational team of cardiovascular researchers has reported the largest ever genomewide association study meta-analysis, encompassing 46 data sets and leading to the identification of 59 new genetic variants associated with plasma lipid levels.1 Potentially the most provocative finding is an association between coronary artery disease and a mutation in the gene for sortilin 1, an intracellular trafficking protein involved in hepatic lipid metabolism.2

The team is now studying the sortilin 1 (SORT1) pathway in animals and haspartnered with RNAi company Alnylam Pharmaceuticals Inc., which has exclusive rights to develop and commercialize any SORT1-targeting therapeutic that results from the research.

Previous GWA studies enrolling up to 20,000 individuals of European ancestry had identified SNP variants at 36 genetic loci that contributed to variation in plasma

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