Heart rhythm genes possible factors in SIDS

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Heart Rhythm and SIDS

Nearly 10 percent of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) victims have mutations or variations in genes associated with potentially lethal heart rhythms (arrhythmias), according to two newly published studies involving Vanderbilt researchers.

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The findings indicate that arrhythmia-susceptibility genes represent important genetic contributors to SIDS, said Alfred L. George Jr., M.D., senior author on one of the studies. The studies appear in the early online edition of the journal Circulation.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 2,200 deaths each year in the United States are attributed to SIDS, making it the third leading cause of death among all infants, but the leading cause of mortality in infants age 1 month to 1 year. Several behavioral and environmental factors

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