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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Causes of thrombophilia yet to be discovered: a personal view.

Prediction of genetic risk factors for venous thrombosis might best be left for only wise soothsayers. Nonetheless, based on the principle that hypercoagulability, either systemic or vascular-bed-specific, predisposes to thrombosis, we venture some speculations. Hyperactivity of platelets could be caused by elevated numbers of surface glycoproteins or defective signal transduction pathways. The reported efficacy of aspirin for prevention of venous thrombosis is consistent with the prediction that certain platelet defects may increase the risk of venous thrombosis. Hyperlipidaemia is associated with hypercoagulability, and lipoproteins exhibit procoagulant (e.g. triglyceride-rich particles and oxidized low-density lipoprotein) or anticoagulant (e.g. high-density-lipoprotein's cofactor activity for activated protein C/protein S) activities. This leads to the prediction that defects in lipids and/or lipoproteins may increase the risk for venous thrombosis. Interestingly, statins were recently reported to prevent the occurrence of venous thrombosis in the HERS (Heart and Estrogen/Progestin Replacement) trial. We also predict that new defects in the protein C pathway (e.g. defective endothelial protein C receptor or novel cofactors for activated protein C/protein S) will be discovered. Risk factors affecting the majority of patients will likely involve new single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) like the factor V nt G1691A or prothrombin nt G20210A SNPs. The Human Genome Project will soon accelerate discovery of new SNPs that are risk factors for venous thrombosis.[1]


  1. Causes of thrombophilia yet to be discovered: a personal view. Griffin, J.H., Deguchi, H., Fernandez, J.A. Haemostasis (2000) [Pubmed]
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