Evidence for contribution of the y chromosome in atherosclerotic plaque occurrence in men

Konstantinos Voskarides, Despina Hadjipanagi, Louiza Papazachariou, Maura Griffin, Andrie G. Panayiotou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Diseases such as atherosclerosis and coronary artery disease demonstrate disparate population prevalence or present with variable severity in men and women. While the usual explanation points to hormonal status, the role of the Y chromosome has been implicated, but not sufficiently studied. We genotyped six markers of the male-specific region of the Y chromosome, representing the major haplogroups (YAP, G, I, J, K, and R) in 373 male participants of the "Cyprus Study" with ultrasonic data on subclinical atherosclerosis. Of the five major haplogroups identified, two (J and K) accounted for roughly 67% of the Y-chromosome variance among these Greek Cypriot men. Carriers of haplogroup K had a 2.5-fold higher age-adjusted risk for having an atherosclerotic plaque present in any of the four bifurcations scanned, compared to men with other Y-chromosome lineages (OR=2.51; 95% CI=1.18 to 5.33; p=0.017). Carriers of the YAP haplogroup had about 50% less risk for having a plaque in the femoral bifurcation versus the rest (OR=0.46; 95% CI=0.27 to 0.77; p<0.001). We show a possible contribution of the Y chromosome in atherosclerotic phenotypes in men adding to the previous findings for coronary artery disease. Additional studies are warranted as evidence suggests that the Y chromosome could serve as a biomarker for the health status of men.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)552-556
Number of pages5
JournalGenetic Testing and Molecular Biomarkers
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2014


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