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deCODE Study Expands Clinical Utility of deCODE AF(TM) for Improving the Diagnosis of Atrial Fibrillation and Preventing Stroke

REYKJAVIK, Iceland, November 10 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- In a presentation yesterday at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions 2008, scientists from deCODE genetics (Nasdaq:DCGN) presented data from large scale case-control studies in multiple populations that underscore the clinical utility of the deCODE AF(TM) test for improving the diagnosis and treatment of atrial fibrillation as a means to prevent stroke. deCODE AF(TM) is a DNA-based reference laboratory test that detects two single-letter variations (SNPs) in the human genome that deCODE has shown double the risk of atrial fibrillation (AF). It is an important tool for physicians because atrial fibrillation (AF), a common cardiac arrythmia, is often intermittent and therefore under diagnosed. Detecting AF frequently requires more extensive cardiac monitoring than is feasible on all patients who have suffered stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA).

deCODE's newly presented data demonstrate that the SNPs measured by deCODE AF(TM) are the most significant known genetic risk factors not only for AF, but also for ischemic stroke. But most surprisingly, these same markers were also shown to confer risk of cryptogenic and large vessel stroke as well. The strong connection between AF and non-cardiogenic subtypes led the deCODE team to estimate that 20-30% of these subtypes is likely due to undiagnosed, intermittent AF. This means that AF causes an even larger proportion of stroke than previously believed, making tools like deCODE AF(TM) all the more important for helping doctors to target monitoring to those at risk and to tailor therapy accordingly.

"Through an analysis of the SNPs in deCODE AF(TM) we have expanded our understanding of the role of AF in causing stroke, and physicians can immediately take this new information into the clinic through the use of the same test. This has implications for the prevention of recurrent stroke, because most patients who have suffered a cryptogenic or large vessel event are discharged and put on Plavix or aspirin, which have little impact in preventing AF. Testing all of their stroke and TIA patients with deCODE AF(TM), doctors can identify those who should be monitored for AF. And for those who evidence AF, warfarin may be the best therapy. With our partner Medicomp we are now planning a multicenter study pairing the use of deCODE AF(TM) with ambulatory digital cardiac monitors, in order to demonstrate the impact that improving the detection of AF cna have on the prevention of stroke," said Dr. Kari Stefansson, M.D., Dr. Med., CEO of deCODE, a board-certified neurologist and neuropathologist.

About deCODE AF(TM) and this study

In 2007, deCODE discovered two SNPs on chromosome 4q25 that double the risk of atrial fibrillation, and later that year launched deCODE AF(TM) to enable doctors to detect these SNPs in their patients. In the study discussed above, deCODE conducted a genome-wide association study to identify risk variants for stroke. The deCODE team analyzed more than 300,000 single latter variations (SNPs) across the genomes of more than 35,000 stroke patients and control subjects from several discovery and replication cohorts from the United States and Europe. The 4q25 SNPs in the deCODE AF test - called rs10033464 and rs2200733 - were the only markers found to confer significantly increased risk of ischemic stroke in general and carioembolic stroke in particular. This was not unexpected, because AF is such a major risk for ischemic stroke. However rs2200733 was also strongly associated with increased risk of non-cardiogenic stroke as well.

How to order deCODE AF(TM)

Additional information and physician order forms for deCODE AFr(TM) can be found at The price of the test is $200 dollars and deCODE facilitates filing for reimbursement with commercial insurers. Testing is performed in deCODE's CLIA-registered laboratory, which has analyzed the genomes of hundreds of thousands of people from around the globe.

About deCODE

deCODE is a bio-pharmaceutical company developing drugs and DNA-based tests to improve the treatment, diagnosis and prevention of common diseases. Its lead therapeutic programs, which leverage the company's expertise in chemistry and structural biology, include DG041, an antiplatelet compound being developed for the prevention of arterial thrombosis; DG051 and DG031, compounds targeting the leukotriene pathway for the prevention of heart attack; and DG071 and a platform for other PDE4 modulators with therapeutic applications in Alzheimer's disease and other conditions. deCODE is a global leader in human genetics, and has identified key variations in the genome (SNPs) conferring increased risk of major public health challenges from cardiovascular disease to cancer. Based upon these discoveries deCODE has brought to market a growing range of DNA-based tests for gauging risk and empowering prevention of common diseases. Through its CLIA-registered laboratory, deCODE is offers deCODE T2(TM) for type 2 diabetes; deCODE AF(TM) for atrial fibrillation and stroke; deCODE MI(TM) for heart attack; deCODE ProCa(TM) for prostate cancer; deCODE Glaucoma(TM) for a major type of glaucoma; and deCODE BreastCancer, for the common forms of breast cancer. deCODE is delivering on the promise of the new genetics.(SM) Visit us on the web at; on our diagnostics site at; for our pioneering personal genome analysis service, integrating the genetic variants included in these tests and those linked to another twenty common diseases, at; and on our blog at

Any statements contained in this presentation that relate to future plans, events or performance are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results, and the timing of events, to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, among others, those relating to our ability to obtain financing and to form collaborative relationships, the effect of a potential delisting of our common stock from The Nasdaq Global Market, uncertainty regarding potential future deterioration in the market for auction rate securities which could negatively affect our cash position and result in additional permanent impairment charges, our ability to develop and market diagnostic products, the level of third party reimbursement for our products, risks related to preclinical and clinical development of pharmaceutical products, including the identification of compounds and the completion of clinical trials, the effect of government regulation and the regulatory approval processes, market acceptance, our ability to obtain and protect intellectual property rights for our products, dependence on collaborative relationships, the effect of competitive products, industry trends and other risks identified in deCODE's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including, without limitation, the risk factors identified in our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and any updates to those risk factors filed from time to time in our Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q or Current Reports on Form 8-K. deCODE undertakes no obligation to update or alter these forward-looking statements as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.


deCODE communications

Edward Farmer


deCODE diagnostics

Clyde Shores


Porter Novelli

Amy Speak


SOURCE deCODE genetics Inc
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