Principal Investigator: Professor Sir Nilesh Samani
Study Start: August 2012

nurse taking bloods

The Genetics and Vascular Health Check study (GENVASC) is a large study run in conjunction with Clinical Commissioning Groups and Primary Care practices across Leicester. The purpose of GENVASC is to help determine whether the addition of genetic information can improve risk prediction of Coronary Artery Disease (CAD).

Currently, coronary risk scores are used to classify individuals into low (<10%), medium (10-20%) and high (>20%) risk groups to help target prevention in individuals at the highest risk of developing CAD. While this approach has merit, since the majority of individuals fall into low or medium risk groups, in absolute terms more people develop CAD in these groups than in the high risk group (despite their proportional risk being lower). Therefore, improving the accuracy of risk categorisation for CAD has important public health and clinical benefits.

In the last 5 years there has been remarkable progress in identifying genetic variants that affect risk of CAD,  with much of this work being co-led from Leicester. These discoveries provide a framework for testing whether the addition of genetic information in the form of a genetic risk score can improve current risk prediction of CAD.

The GENVASC study capitalises on the unique opportunity provided by the NHS Health Check Programme, which is being widely promoted and specifically targets all individuals aged 40-74 years who are free of cardiovascular disease. Consenting participants taking part in the health check programme are asked to provide an additional sample of blood to subsequently determine whether the addition of genetic information would have improved prediction of risk for coronary disease in individuals at low/medium risk. The first participant was recruited to the study in October 2012 and to date more than 100 GP surgeries in Leicester City CCG West Leicestershire CCG, East Leicestershire and Rutland CCG are involved in the study. The team look forward to welcoming more practices over the next few months. We aim to recruit and follow-up over 30,000 participants over the course of the study.



To find out more about the GENVASC study please email Chris Greengrass (GENVASC Project Manager) or Emma Beeston (GENVASC Research Nurse).  For all documents relating to this study, please visit the BRC website

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