NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Two studies appearing in the American Journal of Human Genetics today uncovered a handful of low-frequency variants, including novel variants in ANGPTL8, PNPLA5, and PCSK7, among others, that seem to contribute to cholesterol or lipid levels in the blood.

Lipid levels, especially LDL-C levels, are risk factors for coronary artery disease. According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, heart disease is the most common cause of death in the US, as some 600,000 people die a year from the condition.

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