Heart drug to cut need for genetic tests

Tests for genetic polymorphisms may no longer be needed before prescribing ACS treatment.

Genes may block drug response (Photograph: spl)
Genes may block drug response (Photograph: spl)

The antiplatelet drug ticagrelor may remove the need for genetic testing of patients, research suggests.

A sub-study of the PLATO trial showed ticagrelor, currently in development, was effective at reducing acute coronary syndromes (ACS) in patients with genetic polymorphisms that cause a poor response to conventional drugs.

The study, published in The Lancet, suggests treatment with ticagrelor means patients could receive faster access to more effective treatment.

At present, ACS is treated using dual antiplatelet therapy in the form of aspirin plus clopidogrel or prasugrel.

However, about 10-15 per cent of patients have genetic variations in the genes CYP2C19 and ABCB1, which can cause a poor response to clopidogrel.

Researchers used data from 10,285 patients who were part of the PLATO trial and agreed to genetic testing.

The primary outcome was a composite of cardiovascular death, MI or stroke, with 12 months follow-up.

Among patients with the genetic polymorphisms, ACS occurred less often with ticagrelor than clopidogrel.

However, in patients without a loss-of-function allele there was no difference in efficacy between the two drugs.

Berkshire GP Dr George Kassianos, a member of the British Cardiovascular Society, said removing the need for genetic profiling was good news, as the service is often unavailable to a practice or the local hospital.

He added: 'It is more versatile when it comes to needing to reverse the anti-thrombotic action. This is important when there is a need to perform an intervention such as a coronary bypass.'

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register

Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

Deadline missed for PHE report on how ethnicity affects COVID-19 outcomes

Deadline missed for PHE report on how ethnicity affects COVID-19 outcomes

Public Health England (PHE) has missed its 31 May deadline for reporting on how factors...

Lockdown complacency threatens second COVID-19 spike that could 'overwhelm' NHS

Lockdown complacency threatens second COVID-19 spike that could 'overwhelm' NHS

Complacency around easing coronavirus lockdown measures could trigger a second wave...

Practices asked to 'proactively address' unmet health needs during pandemic

Practices asked to 'proactively address' unmet health needs during pandemic

GP practices in England have been told to assess where care has been delayed during...

Hertfordshire GP trainee Dr Abdorreza Sedghi dies from COVID-19

Hertfordshire GP trainee Dr Abdorreza Sedghi dies from COVID-19

A GP trainee working in Hertfordshire who has been praised for his ‘charisma and...

GP anger as shielding advice changed 'without warning'

GP anger as shielding advice changed 'without warning'

GPs have hit out at a lack of warning over changes to advice for patients on shielding...

Coronavirus: Key guidance GPs need to know about COVID-19

Coronavirus: Key guidance GPs need to know about COVID-19

GPonline provides an overview of the key guidance relating to coronavirus, including...