We compared genotype frequencies of several polymorphisms that are candidates to influence sports performance (i.e., ACTN3 R577X, ACE ID, PPARGC1A Gly482Ser, AMPD1 C34T, CKMM 985bp/1170bp and GDF8 [myostatin] K153R) in 123 non-athletic controls, 50 professional cyclists, 52 Olympic-class runners and 39 World-class rowers (medalists in the World championships, lightweight category). We did not find significant differences in genotype distributions among the groups except for the ACE gene -that is, lower (P<0.05) proportion of II in rowers (10.3%) than in the total subject population (22.3%). In summary, sports performance is likely polygenic with the combined effect of hundreds of genetic variants, one possibly being the ACE ID polymorphism (at least in the sports studied here) but many others remain to be identified.
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