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Science Briefing

3 genes boost risk for gout

October 04, 2008|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Researchers have discovered three genes linked to gout, a disease marked by the painful buildup of uric acid crystals in joints, tendons and surrounding tissues. An estimated 3 million Americans suffer from the disorder.

Researchers reported Wednesday in the journal Lancet that all three genes are associated with transport of uric acid and that individuals with the mutant forms of all three genes have 40 times the normal risk of developing gout.

Gene analysis could be used to identify people who should not receive certain drugs that are known to increase the risk of gout, researchers said.

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