Gallstone Genes

Gallstones are not something you usually think about — until something goes wrong.  And then you think about it a lot! Gallstones are usually made up of cholesterol but can also contain calcium bilirubinate.  It is estimated that 10 – 40% of the population…

Medications and Your Genes

Here’s a dirty little secret: not all prescription drugs will work for you. Ok, that isn’t really a secret. Anyone who has ever gotten a prescription from their doctor knows it is usually accompanied by “Let’s see if the medication will work for you”….

Heart disease, cancer, diabetes: A gene that ties together the “Big 3”

When it comes to chronic diseases, the Big 3 are heart disease, cancer, and type 2 diabetes. Heart disease is the number one killer in the US, with cancer a close second. Diabetes numbers are increasing at an alarming rate. I recently was reading several…

Early to bed, early to rise – helps with weight loss and diabetes

Meal timing and light at night are modern issues that impact diabetes and obesity risk.

Should I Take Aspirin to Prevent Heart Disease?

Everyone knows that aspirin protects against heart disease, right? Well, it turns out that aspirin may only protect some people from heart disease, and for others, it can actually slightly increase the risk of heart disease.  It all seems to depend on a variant of the…

Changing Your Circadian Gene Expression with Polyphenols

This is a bit of a departure from my usual article. It is a paper that I recently wrote for a class that I’m taking for my Master’s in biology.  Thought I would share it in case anyone is interested… Overview: Resveratrol, EGC/G, grape…

CYP3A4 and CYP3A5: How genes impact prescription medications

Our bodies break down (metabolize) drugs and other toxins through a group of enzymes known as the CYP450 family. Different CYP enzymes break down different substances, and we all carry genetic variants that can impact whether we metabolize a drug quickly or slowly. The…

Vitamin K: CYP4F2 and VKORC1 Genetic Variants

Vitamin K1 is a fat-soluble vitamin that is needed by our bodies to synthesize the proteins responsible for blood coagulation.  Without vitamin K1, also known as phylloquinone, bleeding is hard to control.  We get vitamin K1 from eating green plants, as phylloquinone is a part…

Genetic variants that increase susceptibility to Lyme disease

Lyme disease is caused by being bitten by a tick that carries the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi in North America or other Borrelia species in Europe.  General symptoms after being bitten can include a bulls-eye rash, fever, headache, pain, and general malaise. The majority of people recover after…

Dads matter: MTHFR variants in fathers affect miscarriage risk

Dads matter – MTHFR variants affect sperm quality and infertility risk. They also affect the risk of miscarriage.