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Neurobiol Aging. 2005 Jul;26(7):1005-10. Epub 2004 Nov 23.

The association between promoter polymorphism of the interleukin-10 gene and Alzheimer's disease.

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Department of Chemical Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, Hong Kong, China.


The importance of the role of inflammation has been suggested in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Interleukin-10 (IL-10) is an anti-inflammatory cytokine that may modulate the progression of the disease through the inhibition of the action of pro-inflammatory cytokines. In this study, three polymorphisms in the regulatory region of the IL-10 gene (-1082, -819 and -592) in 95 Chinese AD patients and 117 age-matched healthy Chinese subjects were investigated. We found that among the Chinese population, the A and C alleles at the -592 position are strongly linked to the T and C alleles at the -819 position, respectively. A strong association with AD was found for these two IL-10 polymorphisms, which are in complete linkage disequilibrium (-592C and -819C), and the odds ratio of AD is 4.03 (95% CI 1.23-13.23; p = 0.011). The functional significance of the IL-10 genotype was further supported by the significant association between plasma IL-10 concentrations and genotypes that were found in an independent sample of 160 healthy male volunteers. No interaction effect between the ApoE and IL-10 genotypes is found. Therefore, we concluded that the functional polymorphisms of the IL-10 gene act as a risk factor for AD.

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