Novel Common Genetic Risk Factor for Lumbar Disk Disease
With the completion of the human genome project there seems to have been this burst of wanting to blame genetics for the chronic diseases of today’s society. With diseases such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes, it is shown consistently that environment plays a much larger part in disease determination than genetics. In addition, all these diseases are multi-modal, meaning that, if genetics do play a part, it is a series of multiple genes all contributing to an end result and not likely to benefit from genetic manipulation towards a single gene. My thoughts on a genetic factor for LBP are based on what I see in my office. Most patients have experienced some event that created an initial injury and they never completely healed from that injury. Future episodes of LBP are just extensions of that initial injury. There may be some genetic factor contributing to the condition in a small percentage of the population, but money would be better spent promoting chiropractic for LBP than discovering some pharmaceutical to fix the underlying genetic problem.