Blockages in the blood vessels to the heart (coronary arteries) can limit blood flow, causing what is known as ischemic heart disease. Temporary limitation of blood flow can cause chest pain (angina). If low blood flow lasts long enough, a section of heart tissue dies (a condition known as myocardial infarction, or “heart attack”). Ischemic cerebrovascular disease occurs when blockages develop in the blood vessels to the brain. Temporary blockage of blood flow to the brain is called a transient ischemic attack. If lack of blood lasts long enough, a section of brain tissue dies, a condition known as a stroke. Angiotensinogen is a protein in the body that influences blood vessels, blood pressure levels, and the way the body handles salt. Abnormalities (“mutations”) in the genes for angiotensinogen are associated with high blood pressure. Since high blood pressure puts people at risk for ischemic heart and cerebrovascular disease, it is thought that changes in this gene may also be associated with these ischemic conditions. Some small previous studies of this issue have suggested that mutations in this gene are associated with heart disease and stroke, while others have not.