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The CAREGENE study: ACE gene I/D polymorphism and effect of physical training on aerobic power in coronary artery disease
  1. J Defoor1,
  2. L Vanhees1,*,
  3. K Martens2,
  4. G Matthijs2,
  5. A Van Vlerken1,
  6. D Zielinska3,
  7. D Schepers1,
  8. R Vlietinck2,
  9. R Fagard4
  1. 1Cardiovascular Rehabilitation Unit, Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, K U Leuven, Leuven, Belgium
  2. 2Centre for Human Genetics of the University Hospitals Leuven, Department of Human Genetics, K U Leuven, Leuven, Belgium
  3. 3Department of Rehabilitation, Medical University of Gdansk, Gdansk, Poland
  4. 4Hypertension and Cardiovascular Rehabilitation Unit, Department of Molecular and Cardiovascular Research, K U Leuven, Leuven, Belgium
  1. Correspondence to:
    Dr Prof Luc Vanhees
    Department Rehabilitation Sciences, Tervuursevest 101, B-3000 Leuven, Belgium; Luc.vanhees{at}

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In coronary artery disease (CAD) the individual variation in aerobic power and the response to physical training are largely unexplained.1

The gene coding for the angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) is expressed in several types of somatic cells, including vascular cells, heart, lung, and muscles.2 Intron 16 contains a polymorphism characterised by the presence (insertion (I)) or absence (deletion (D)) of a 287 bp Alu repeat sequence,3 which has been associated with endurance related phenotypes and the response to training.4

The objective of the present study was to investigate the role of ACE I/D polymorphism on aerobic power and its response to physical training in patients with CAD enrolled in the CAREGENE (cardiac rehabilitation and genetics of exercise performance) study.


Biologically unrelated white patients with CAD (mean (SE) age 56 (0.3) years) who had achieved evident exhaustion during graded cycle ergometer testing before and after three months of physical training (three sessions weekly) from 1990 through 2001 (n  =  1095) were eligible for inclusion. The methods for graded exercise testing and training have been …

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  • * Also the Hypertension and Cardiovascular Rehabilitation Unit, Department of Molecular and Cardiovascular Research, K U Leuven

  • There is no conflict of interest.

  • Approval for this study was obtained from the Ethics Committee of the Faculty of Medicine.