Background and aim: Arterial stiffness increases with age and has been found to predict cardiovascular disease. C-reactive protein (CRP) is an inflammation marker and has been found to be associated with arterial stiffness and risk of cardiovascular disease. Genetic factors account for part of the variance in CRP level. We studied the association of the total common variation in the CRP gene by polymorphisms 1184 C/T, 2042 C/T, 2911 C/G and haplotypes with arterial stiffness within the Rotterdam study. Methods: The study (n = 3615) was embedded in the Rotterdam Study, a prospective, population-based study among subjects aged 55 years and older. Associations of genotypes and haplotypes with CRP level and measures of arterial stiffness were examined using linear regression and analyses of variance. Measures of arterial stiffness included aortic pulse wave velocity, carotid distensibility and pulse pressure. Analyses were adjusted for age, sex, mean arterial pressure, heart rate, known cardiovascular risk factors and measures of atherosclerosis. Results: CRP level was significantly associated with pulse wave velocity (p < 0.001) and pulse pressure (p < 0.05), also after adjusting for cardiovascular risk factors. CRP level was also associated with the 1184 C/T (T-allele: higher level), the 2042 C/T (T-allele: lower level) and 2911 C/G (G-allele: higher level) polymorphisms (all p < 0.001). Genotype and haplotype analyses showed no consistent associations of genetic variation with pulse wave velocity, carotid distensibility and pulse pressure. Conclusions: No consistent associations of the CRP polymorphisms 1184 C/T, 2042 C/T, 2911 C/G and corresponding haplotypes were found with measures of arterial stiffness.

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Keywords Arterial stiffness, C-reactive protein, Distensibility coefficient, Polymorphism, Pulse pressure, Pulse wave velocity
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Journal Artery Research
Sie, M.P.S, Mattace-Raso, F.U.S, Kardys, I, de Maat, M.P.M, Uitterlinden, A.G, Hofman, A, … Witteman, J.C.M. (2008). Genetic variation in the C-reactive protein gene and arterial stiffness: The Rotterdam Study. Artery Research, 2(4), 148–155. doi:10.1016/j.artres.2008.10.002