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Race, Ethnicity, and Response to Drugs

In recent decades, clinical research has exposed significant differences in the metabolism, clinical effectiveness, and side-effect profiles of many important drugs and medical treatments among racial and ethnic groups. We are pleased to offer this curated collection of articles highlighting the latest evidence on factors influencing response to drugs and treatments among different racial/ethnic groups. Understanding these complex influences is crucial for improving diversity and inclusion in clinical research and studies.

Variation in the HMGCR gene is associated with racial differences in low-density lipoprotein cholesterol response to simvastatin treatment

Krauss RM, Mangravite LM, Smith JD, et al.

Circulation, 2008

This article highlights how variations in the HMGCR gene contribute to variations in response to simvastatin, a class of drugs used to treat high cholesterol, among Blacks and whites.

Race-Dependent Association of High-Density Lipoprotein Cholesterol Levels With Incident Coronary Artery Disease

Zakai N, Minnier J, Safford M, et al.

Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 2022

This study explores why coronary heart disease (CHD) risk prediction equations underperform in Black adults.

Racial and ethnic differences in pharmacotherapy to prevent coronary artery disease and thrombotic events

Tamargo J, Kaski JC, Kimura T, et al.

European Heart Journal—Cardiovascular Pharmacotherapy, 2022

This article reviews important racial/ethnic differences in the prevalence, risk factors, biomarkers, recurrence, and outcomes of cardiovascular disease (CVD), all of which influence differences in the exposure, efficacy, and safety of cardiovascular drugs between races/ethnicities,

Racial and ethnic differences in response to medicines: towards individualized pharmaceutical treatment.

Burroughs VJ, Maxey RW, Levy RA

Journal of the National Medical Association, 2022

This article reviews the genetic factors that underlie varying responses to medicines observed among different ethnic and racial groups.

Co-expression of drug metabolizing cytochrome P450 enzymes and estrogen receptor alpha (ESR1) in human liver: racial differences and the regulatory role of ESR1

Collins JM, Wang D.

Drug Metab Pers Ther., 2021

This article examines differences in the expression of cytochrome P450 (CYP) drug metabolizing enzymes between White and Black Americans and how these differences influence drug metabolism.

Cardiovascular Pharmacogenomics: Does It Matter If You’re Black or White?

De T, Park CS, Perera MA.

Annu Rev Pharmacol Toxicol., 2019

This review discusses the genetic factors that underlie variability to drug response and known pharmacogenomic associations and how these differ between populations, with an emphasis on the current knowledge in cardiovascular pharmacogenomics.

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