Researchers identified a genetic variation that may be responsible for erectile dysfunction, in a finding that would help improve future treatments for this widespread condition among men, according to results published this Monday in the Proceedings of the American Academy of Sciences (PNAS).
Scientists have found, in the large chain of human DNA, a specific gene where a variation was related to erectile dysfunction, working from a database of 36,649 patients from the Kaiser Permanente health consortium in northern California, USA.
Erectile dysfunction linked to a gene variation by a new study in this regard
According to these results, men with one copy of this variant have a 26% higher risk of having erection problems than the average population. Those with two copies of the variant have a 59% higher risk, according to geneticist Eric Jorgenson, the leading author of the study.
The average risk is about one in five men, but according to a 2007 study in the United States, the proportion increases significantly with age. So, about one-third of the risk of erectile dysfunction is due to genetic factors.
According to this new study, however, the genetic variant identified corresponds to 2% of that risk, more than any other recognized factor to date, as Eric Jorgenson said for the AFP.
Weight issues, as well as circulatory conditions, are also causes of erectile dysfunction
Obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, which have genetic components, are also linked to erection problems.
“The treatments available for erectile dysfunction don’t work in about half of the men treated,” Jorgenson says. “If we could develop new treatments aimed at this genetic variation, we could help these men,” the researcher added.
These results confirm previous studies that have now been validated by the new research that studied that linked erectile dysfunction to genetic factors, following one of the largest patient databases in the United Kingdom.