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Credit: Wego Health

The research from the Queensland Institute of Medical Research (QIMR) reveals 59 new regions on the DNA that affect levels of LDL and HDL cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood -important indicators of heart disease risk.

The study observed the statistics of the DNA and cholesterol readings of 100,000 people of European, South and East Asian, and African American heritage.

The findings are very significant, said Dr John Whitfield from the genetic epidemiology laboratory in QIMR.

High levels of bad cholesterol (LDL) are indicative of elevated risks for coronary heart disease and heart attack, said Dr Whitfield in a statement.

He said the more information they can gather about the way genes affect the levels of the cholesterols, the better they get at understanding the risk of heart disease and identify those who have the highest risk.

Individually, the genes have only a small effect, but their cumulative effect leads to a higher risk of heart disease, explained Dr Whitfield.

Research done previously using just a few thousand subjects had identified genes that have big effects as they are easiest to locate.

The recent bigger pool of subjects found that better understanding of how our body processes fat and how it is deposited on artery walls lies with the genes that carry smaller effect.

Dr Whitfield is hopeful that one day we will have an effective genetic test that can have treatments made suited for every individual's needs.