Characterization of two polymorphisms in the leukotriene C4 synthase gene in an Australian population of subjects with mild, moderate, and severe asthma

M-A. Kedda, J. Shi, D. Duffy, S. Phelps, I. Yang, K. O'Hara, K. Fong, Philip Thompson

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    61 Citations (Scopus)


    BackgroundThe cysteinyl-leukotrienes (cys-LTs) are proinflammatory mediators that are important in the pathophysiology of asthma. LTC4 synthase is a key enzyme in the cys-LT biosynthetic pathway, and studies in small populations have suggested that a promoter polymorphism (A-444C) in the gene might be associated with asthma severity and aspirin intolerance.ObjectiveWe sought to screen the LTC4 synthase gene for polymorphisms and to determine whether there is an association between these polymorphisms and asthma severity or aspirin sensitivity in a large, well-phenotyped population and to determine whether this polymorphism is functionally relevant.MethodsThe coding regions of the LTC4 synthase gene were screened for polymorphisms and the A-444C polymorphism was analyzed in a large Australian white adult population of mild (n = 282), moderate (n = 236), and severe asthmatic subjects (n = 86) and nonasthmatic subjects (n = 458), as well as in aspirin-intolerant asthmatic subjects (n = 67). The functional activity of the promoter polymorphism was investigated by transient transfection of HL-60 cells with a promoter construct.ResultsA new polymorphism was identified in intron 1 of the gene (IVS1-10c>a) but was not associated with asthma. Association studies showed that the A-444C polymorphism was weakly associated with asthma per se, but there was no association between the C-444 allele and chronic asthma severity or aspirin intolerance. A meta-analysis of all the genetic studies conducted to date found significant between-study heterogeneity in C-444 allele frequencies within different clinical subgroups. In vitro functional studies showed no significant differences in transcription efficiency between constructs containing the A-444 allele or the C-444 allele.ConclusionsOur data confirm that, independent of transcriptional activity, the C-444 allele in the LTC4 synthase gene is weakly associated with the asthma phenotype, but it is not related to disease severity or aspirin intolerance.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)889-895
    JournalThe Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 2004


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