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Genetic associations of intracranial aneurysm formation and sub-arachnoid hemorrhage

1 Department of Surgery. Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami, Miami, FL, USA
2 Department of Neurosurgery, Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami, Miami, FL, USA
3 Department of Neurology, Emory University School of Medicine, Marcus Stroke and Neuroscience Center, Grady Memorial Hospital, Atlanta, Georgia

Correspondence Address:
Christian B Theodotou,
Department of Surgery, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, FL
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

Risk factors for cerebral aneurysms typically include age, hypertension, smoking, and alcohol usage. However, the possible connection of aneurysms with genetic conditions such as Marfan's syndrome, polycystic kidney disease, and neurofibromatosis raises the question of possible genetic risk factors for aneurysm, and additionally, genetic risk factors for rupture. We conducted a literature review using the PubMed database for studies regarding genetic correlation with cerebral aneurysm formation as well as rupture from December 2008 to Jun 2015. Twenty-one studies related to IA formation and 10 concerning IA rupture that met our criteria were found and tabulated. The most studied gene and the strongest association was 9p21/CDKN2, which is involved in vessel wall remodelling. Other possible genes that may contribute to IA formation include EDNRA and SOX17; however, these factors were not studied as robustly as CDKN2. Multiple factors contribute to aneurysm formation and rupture and the contributions of blood flow dynamics and comorbidities as mentioned previously, cannot be ignored. While these elements are important to development and rupture of aneurysms, genetic influence may predispose certain patients to formation of aneurysms and eventual rupture.

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