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Diseases » Asthma » Inheritance

Inheritance and Genetics of Asthma

Racial Patterns for Asthma:

Racial Details for Asthma: Asthma affects slightly more African Americans (5.8 percent) than Americans of European descent (5.1 percent). In 1993, however, blacks were 3 to 4 times more likely than whites to be hospitalized for asthma. (Source: excerpt from Asthma A Concern for Minority Populations, NIAID Fact Sheet: NIAID)

Asthma: Genetics Information

Genetics of Asthma: Asthma is a what is known as a "complex" heritable disease. This means that there are a number of genes that contribute toward a person's susceptibility to a disease, and in the case of asthma, chromosomes 5, 6, 11, 14, and 12 have all been implicated. The relative roles of these genes in asthma predisposition are not clear, but one of the most promising sites for investigation is on chromosome 5. Although a gene for asthma from this site has not yet been specifically identified, it is known that this region is rich in genes coding for key molecules in the inflammatory response seen in asthma, including cytokines, growth factors, and growth factor receptors. (Source: Genes and Disease by the National Center for Biotechnology)

About inheritance and genetics:

Inheritance of Asthma refers to whether the condition is inherited from your parents or "runs" in families. The level of inheritance of a condition depends on how important genetics are to the disease. Strongly genetic diseases are usually inherited, partially genetic diseases are sometimes inherited, and non-genetic diseases are not inherited. For general information, see Introduction to Genetics.


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