Scientists at deCODE genetics and academic colleagues from Iceland, The Netherlands, Denmark, USA and Illumina, Inc., today report the discovery of single-letter variants (SNPs) in the sequence of the human genome associated with high risk of sick sinus syndrome (SSS). The study is published today in the online edition of Nature Genetics.
The study reports a genetic variant in the gene MYH6 that is associated with high risk of sick sinus syndrome (SSS) in Icelanders. The lifetime risk of being diagnosed with SSS is about 6% for individuals without this genetic variant but is increased by 12.5 times, to approximately 50%, for those that carry the variant. SSS is a heart rhythm disorder that is characterized by an inappropriately slow heart rate. It is commonly seen in the elderly and many with SSS eventually need a permanent pacemaker.