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Clin Chem Lab Med. 2003 Jul;41(7):888-92.

Polymorphisms in the IL-4 and IL-4R [alpha] genes and allergic asthma.

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  • 1Immunology Laboratory, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, P.R. of China. Tianpencui@hotmail.com


Allergic asthma is caused by genetic and environmental factors that interact to determine disease susceptibility and severity. Several lines of evidence suggest that the interleukin (IL-4 gene and the IL-4-receptor alpha (IL-4Ralpha) gene are involved in the development of atopic diseases. We sought to determine whether two polymorphism sites in IL-4 and IL-4Ralpha chain were associated with allergic asthma in a Chinese population. We obtained DNA and clinical data from allergic asthma patients, which were compared with those of a group of healthy control subjects. The subjects were genotyped for the IL-4 C-590T promoter polymorphism and the IL-4R alpha chain Q576R by polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism. The results showed that the IL-4 C-590T was not associated with allergic asthma in a Chinese population. However, the IL-4R alpha chain 576R/R was significantly increased in allergic asthma patients compared with control subjects (chi2 = 21.16; p < 0.01), and also total plasma immunoglobulin E (IgE) level was increased in allergic asthma patients. These data suggest that the IL-4R alpha chain 576R/R genotypes confer genetic susceptibility to allergic asthma in Chinese.

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