Role of MTHFR C677T polymorphism in ischemic stroke.
BACKGROUND: Homozygosity for MTHFR C677T polymorphism can lead to significantly high homocysteine levels and hyperhomocysteinemia is an important risk factor for thrombotic events. AIMS: The aim was to determine role of MTHFR C677T polymorphism in North Indians with ischemic stroke. SETTINGS AND DESIGN: In a prospective study, the subjects of stroke were recruited from the neurology clinic of the hospital. Controls were healthy individuals from the Hematology clinic without any history of stroke. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Plasma homocysteine levels were measured by enzyme immuno assay method after 3 months of acute episode. Serum folate and Vitamin B12 levels were estimated by competitive inhibition radioassay. MTHFR polymorphism was detected by PCR-RFLP using Hinf I enzyme. STATISTICAL ANALYSIS: The analysis of significance of results was done using SPSS software package. A p-value. RESULTS: Thirty-two acute ischemic stroke patients (aged 1-44 years) were studied. Fourteen (43.8%) had recurrent stroke. Nine (28%) had multiple infarcts. Four of 32 patients (12.5%) had high homocysteine levels. Three out of these 4 hyper-homocysteinemia patients were homozygous ( TT ) for MTHFR polymorphism (2 with recurrent stroke). Two of three homozygous cases with TT genotype had low serum folate. Five of 32 stroke cases (18.8%) were heterozygous ( CT ) genotype. CONCLUSIONS: Primary hyper-homocysteinemia appears to be an important risk factor for ischemic stroke in North Indians, most due to MTHFR C677T homozygosity. Folate levels may modify the presentation of the MTHFR TT genotype.