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Scand J Rheumatol. 2018 Jan;47(1):71-78. doi: 10.1080/03009742.2017.1314000. Epub 2017 Aug 16.

Adipokine genes and radiographic hand osteoarthritis in Finnish women: a cross-sectional study.

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a Finnish Institute of Occupational Health , Helsinki , Finland.
b Clinicum , University of Helsinki , Helsinki , Finland.



Available evidence suggests that genetic factors and overweight play major roles in the aetiology of osteoarthritis (OA). We analysed the association of 18 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) from nine adipokine and adipokine receptor genes (LEP, LEPR, ADIPOQ, RETN, NAMPT, SERPINA12, ITLN1, RARRES2, and APLN) with radiographic hand OA.


The study design was cross-sectional. Bilateral hand radiographs of 542 occupationally active Finnish female dentists and teachers aged 45-63 years were examined and classified for the presence of hand OA using reference images. Hand OA was defined as at least three finger joints with radiographic OA of grade 2-4. The genotypes were determined using polymerase chain reaction-based methods. Body mass index (BMI) was calculated based on self-reported height and measured weight. Associations of the individual SNPs and their haplotypes with hand OA were tested using logistic regression analysis.


The minor allele of RETN rs10401670 was associated with a decreased [odds ratio (OR) = 0.73, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.55-0.97, p = 0.03] and RARRES2 rs4721 with an increased (OR 1.41, 95% CI 1.07-1.87, p = 0.01) prevalence of hand OA. Also, LEPR AC (OR 1.54, 95% CI 1.01-2.35, p = 0.05) and RETN GGTT (OR 0.58, 95% CI 0.37-0.93, p = 0.02) haplotypes were associated with hand OA. These associations were modified by BMI when comparing normal and overweight women. However, the associations lost their statistical significance after adjusting for multiple testing.


Our results suggest weak associations between the studied variations in LEPR, RARRES2, and RETN genes and hand OA in Finnish women, and that the associations are modified by BMI. However, these associations could not be verified in the current study.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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