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BackgroundCoronary artery disease (CAD) and major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE) are the leading causes of death in the general population, but risk stratification remains suboptimal. CAD genetic risk scores (GRSs) predict risk independently from clinical tools, like QRISK3. We assessed the added value of GRSs for a variety of cardiovascular traits (CV GRSs) for predicting CAD and MACE and tested their early-life screening potential by comparing against the CAD GRS only.MethodsWe used data from 379 581 participants in the UK Biobank without known cardiovascular conditions (follow-up, 11.3 years; 3.3% CAD cases and 5.2% MACE cases). In a training subset (50%) we built 3 scores: QRISK3; QRISK3 and an established CAD GRS; and QRISK3, the CAD GRS and the CV GRSs. In an independent subset (50%), we evaluated each score's performance using the concordance index, odds ratio and net reclassification index. We then repeated the analyses without considering QRISK3.ResultsFor CAD, the combination of QRISK3 and the CAD GRS had a better performance than QRISK3 alone (concordance index, 0.766 versus 0.753; odds ratio, 5.47 versus 4.82; net reclassification index, 7.7%). Adding the CV GRSs did not significantly improve risk stratification. When only looking at genetic information, the combination of CV GRSs and the CAD GRS had a better performance than the CAD GRS alone (concordance index, 0.637 versus 0.625; odds ratio, 2.17 versus 2.07; net reclassification index, 3.3%). Similar results were obtained for MACE.ConclusionsIn individuals without known cardiovascular disease, the inclusion of CV GRSs to a clinical tool and an established CAD GRS does not improve CAD or MACE risk stratification. However, their combination only with the CAD GRS increases prediction performance indicating potential use in early-life screening before the advanced development of conventional cardiovascular risk factors.

Original publication




Journal article


Circulation. Genomic and precision medicine

Publication Date





Clinical Pharmacology and Precision Medicine Deparment, William Harvey Research Institute, Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, Queen Mary University of London, London, United Kingdom (J.R., S.v.D., W.J.Y., A.T., P.B.M.).


Humans, Cardiovascular Diseases, Genetic Predisposition to Disease, Risk Factors, Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide, Coronary Artery Disease, Heart Disease Risk Factors