Chinese men appear to respond differently to a high blood pressure drug than white men, indicating the races react uniquely to medications. The findings, reported last week, suggest that medical research should be more careful to determine how people from different ethnic backgrounds respond to the same drugs, the researchers said.
Dr. Alastair Wood and his colleagues at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn., compared the responses of 10 men of Chinese descent and 10 American white men to varying doses of the high blood pressure drug propranolol.
In a report published in the New England Journal of Medicine, the researchers found that the drug reduced the heart rate and blood pressure of the Chinese men much more than it reduced the pulse and pressure of the white men.
“We conclude that Chinese men have greater sensitivity than white men to the effects of propranolol on heart rate and blood pressure,” the researchers wrote.