Familial correlations for total testosterone and free testosterone were examined in both random and nonrandom families participating in the Cincinnati Myocardial Infarction and Hormone Family Study (CIMIH). The non- random families were ascertained through Caucasian males who had survived a myocardial infarction (MI) prior to age 56 years, while random families were recruited largely through an adolescent boy maturation study. Eight sex- specific familial correlations were estimated (father-mother, father-son, father-daughter, mother-son, mother-daughter, son-son, daughter-daughter, and son-daughter) for each of the MI and random samples using maximum likelihood methods with appropriate ascertainment correction. These familial correlations were examined for differences between the random and MI samples, as well as for sex-specific familial patterns. The results suggest that total testosterone levels may have a limited role in determining MI risk, as evidenced by the overall heterogeneity between samples, and lower serum levels in MI than random probands. The pattern of correlations for both androgens suggests that a simple genetic model appears unlikely; however, familiality cannot be ruled out. Although possible covariate effects such as age and sex may have masked some potentially significant results, especially in males, familiality in females is suggested (correlations ranging from .3- .9). The relative stability of these hormones in females as compared to that in males may have contributed to its identification, and suggests the familial transmissibility may be associated with adrenal production and/or metabolic clearance of testosterone.
- familial correlations