a1 Danish Twin Registry, University of Southern Denmark, Denmark; Department of Neurology, Odense University Hospital, Denmark. email@example.com
a2 Department of Medical Epidemiology and Statistics, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.
a3 University of Turku, Finland.
a4 Danish Twin Registry, University of Southern Denmark, Denmark; Department of Neurology, Odense University Hospital, Denmark.
a5 Italian Twin Registry, Istituto Superiore di Sanità, Rome, Italy.
a6 Danish Twin Registry, University of Southern Denmark, Denmark.
a7 The Finnish Twin Cohort Study, Department of Public Health, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland.
Stroke is one of the leading causes of severe disability and death in the world. In the present article we outline possibilities and limitations for future stroke research within the GenomEUtwin. The combined sample of twins born before 1958 from Denmark, Finland, and Sweden, and available for follow-up into the second millennium for non-fatal and fatal stroke events through national inpatient and death registers exceeds 70,000 twin pairs. This sample size will enable the study of genetic influences on stroke and major stroke subtypes. Large samples of twins in GenomEUtwin have been followed up repeatedly through interviews and questionnaires concerning a variety of exposures and potential risk factors for stroke. We briefly outline how this information can be combined with the health register information for epidemiologic and genetic epidemiologic studies of stroke. We also present the number of twin pairs concordant and discordant for stroke in Denmark, Finland and Sweden, and time lags between events for twins concordant for stroke. This information illustrates that the number of affected sib pairs for linkage studies is relatively limited, but the sample sizes are promising for association studies.
c1 Address for correspondence: David Gaist, MD, PhD, Danish Twin Registry, Epidemiology, Institute of Public Health, Sdr. Boulevard 23A, 5000 Odense C Denmark.