Ethnicity Greatly Influences the Interleukin-1 Gene Cluster(IL-1b Promoter, Exon-5 and IL-1Ra) Polymorphisms: A Pilot Study of a North Indian Population


There is considerable evidence that polymorphisms in the regulatory regions of cytokine genes are highly influenced ‍by ethnicity. Polymorphisms in interleukin 1-a (IL-1a) and IL-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1Ra) genes, respectively ‍encoding a potent inflammatory agent and an antagonist, which combines with IL-1 receptors competitively, have ‍been associated with a number of diseases like systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, sepsis, kidney ‍diseases, and cancer. In this study, we therefore evaluated the distribution of interleukin-1 gene cluster (IL-1a žpromoter region, exon-5 and IL-1Ra) gene polymorphisms in 206 healthy north Indian subjects, using PCR-based ‍restriction analysis. We also constructed various haplotypes and estimated the linkage disequilibrium (LD). We ‍found that genotype and allelic frequencies for these cytokines were conspicuously different when compared among ‍different ethnic populations. The haplotype ‘T-E1-1’ predominated (41.7%) while the least common was ‘C-E2-2’ ‍(2%) in our population. Genetic linkage between three loci of IL-1 gene showed strong association among the variants ‍in controls (D´=0.42, p< 0.001). Our results suggest that the frequency and distribution of the polymorphisms in ‍India are substantially different from other populations and ethnic groups. Thus they signify an impact of ethnicity ‍and provide a basis for future epidemiological and clinical studies.