Environmental (c2) and genetic (h2) effects on high density lipoprotein (HDL) constituents of children at early adolescence were estimated in 149 Japanese triads composed of the father, the mother and their one fifth-grade schoolchild. Dietary, alcohol drinking, and cigarette smoking habits as well as physical activity were inquired through a questionnaire. Mother-child correlation was significant for all HDL constituents, but father-child correlation was significant only for apolipoprotein (Apo) A-l and spouses' correlation, only for Apo A-II. Children's dietary habits were closer to mothers' than to the fathers'. Among environmental factors significantly related to HDL constituents by multiple regression, however, there was none shared by the family members suggesting that individual rather than shared factors were more influential. When children's HDL constituents were regressed by their environmental factors and parents' residuals obtained as indices for genetic factors, mothers' residuals contributed significantly to HDL cholesterol (HDLC) and Apo A-l, but fathers' did not. For HDLC of children, c2 and h2 estimated by the coefficient of determination were 0.083 (p < 0.05) and 0.097 (p < 0.05), respectively. They were 0.075 (p < 0,05) and 0.022 (NS) for Apo A-l and 0.085 (p<0.05) and 0.046 (p<0.05) for Apo A-II. Thus, HDLC was affected more by genetic factors and less by environmental ones when compared with Apo A-l and A-II. J Epidemiol, 1994 ; 4: 73-82.
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