Ischemic stroke is the third leading cause of death in the US, and the number one cause of adult disability. Environmental risk factors for stroke have been identified, but the genetics of stroke have not been well studied. The National Institute of Neurologic Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) has identified stroke genetics as a research priority. There are few trained experts in stroke epidemiology and fewer who focus on genetics. The proposed research works towards the goals outlined by NINDS for stroke genetics by performing critical investigations leading to future population stroke genetics research in the bi-ethnic community of Nueces County, Texas, as well as developing an individual who will devote her career to the study of stroke and its determinants, including genetics. The candidate is a PhD trained epidemiologist currently working in the field of stroke and is dedicated to a career in stroke research. This application proposes a comprehensive 5-year plan to develop the candidate into an independent stroke researcher, including didactic training, such as attendance in stroke clinics and the emergency department to observe stroke patient treatment, formal coursework in genetics, and hands on training in DNA extraction and screening of genetic markers. The candidate's long-term objective is to become a leader in stroke genetics research by combining skills in epidemiology, biostatistics, and genetics. The University of Michigan has a strong Stroke Program and Department of Human Genetics to assure the candidate's success in these endeavors. The Brain Attack Surveillance in Corpus Christi (BASIC) Project, a population-based stroke surveillance study, will be the data source for the proposed research. Interview data and blood samples from study participants will be used to accomplish the following:
Aim 1 - To describe the size and structure of families in Nueces County, Texas, and determine the availability of stroke-free spouses and offspring of stroke cases to serve as controls;
Aim 2 - To assess the genetic contribution of stroke in the population of Nueces County, Texas;
Aim 3 - To verify the accuracy of stroke cases to report stroke among siblings;
Aim 4 - To assess allele frequencies for ancestry informative markers, determine patterns of genetic admixture in Nueces County, Texas, and establish the feasibility of blood collection.
The Aims of the proposed research pave the way for comprehensive research to investigate the genetic components of stroke including an exploration of the relationship between ethnic genetic admixture and stroke risk and testing specific hypotheses about stroke susceptibility genes.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Mentored Patient-Oriented Research Career Development Award (K23)
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Study Section
NST-2 Subcommittee (NST)
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Gwinn, Katrina
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University of Michigan Ann Arbor
Schools of Medicine
Ann Arbor
United States
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