AIMS - The purpose of this study was to determine whether the deletion/insertion (D/I) polymorphism in the ACE-encoded angiotensin-converting enzyme or the pooled gene effect of five renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS) polymorphisms were disease modifiers in a large cohort of unrelated patients with genotyped hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM).
METHODS AND RESULTS - Five different RAAS polymorphism genotypes were established by PCR amplification of the surrounding polymorphic regions of genomic DNA in a cohort of 389 unrelated patients comprehensively genotyped for HCM-causing mutations in eight sarcomeric/myofilament genes. Patient clinical data were archived in a database blinded both to the primary myofilament defect and the polymorphism genotype. Each patient was assessed with respect to ACE genotype as well as composite pro-left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) RAAS polymorphism score (0-5). Overall, no clinical parameter correlated independently with ACE genotype. Subset analysis of the two most common genetic subtypes of HCM, MYBPC3 (myosin binding protein C) and MYH7 (beta myosin heavy chain), demonstrated a significant pro-LVH effect of DD-ACE only in patients with MYBPC3-HCM. In MYBPC3-HCM, left ventricular wall thickness was greater in patients with DD genotype (25.8+/-5 mm) compared with DI (21.8+/-4) or II genotype (20.8+/-5, P=0.01). Moreover, extreme hypertrophy (>30 mm) was only seen in MYBPC3-HCM patients who also hosted DD-ACE. An effect of RAAS pro-LVH score was evident only in the subgroup of patients with no previously identified myofilament mutation.
CONCLUSION - This study demonstrates that RAAS genotypes may modify the clinical phenotype of HCM in a disease gene-specific fashion rather than indiscriminately.