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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Intervertebral disc degeneration in relation to the COL9A3 and the IL-1ss gene polymorphisms.

Disc degeneration is a complex condition in which environmental factors and multiple genes are expected to act together to determine the degenerative phenotype. Recently associations of COL9A2 (Trp2 allele) and COL9A3 ( Trp3 allele) polymorphisms with lumbar disc disease characterized by sciatica have been reported. However, it is not known whether the Trp2 or Trp3 alleles contribute to disc degeneration (DD). In this study, the association between the collagen genes polymorphisms and lumbar DD was investigated. Furthermore, the influence of the IL-1beta(C(3954)-T) polymorphism on the association of collagen genes polymorphisms with DD was examined. Lumbar intervertebral discs of 135 middle-aged occupationally active men were evaluated with magnetic resonance imaging, using decreased signal intensity of the nucleus pulposus, disc bulges, and decreased disc height as signs of degeneration. Blood samples were analysed for the presence of COL9A3 and COL9A2 tryptophan alleles ( Trp3 and Trp2 alleles). The COL11A2, COL2A1 and IL-1beta(C(3954)-T) polymorphisms were also analysed. Multivariate logistic regression analysis allowing for occupation and body mass index showed that the carriage of the Trp3 allele in the absence of the IL-1betaT(3954) allele increased the risk of dark nucleus pulposus (OR 7.0, 95% CI 1.3-38.8) and joint occurrence of degenerative changes (OR 8.0, 95% CI 1.4-44.7). There was no effect of the Trp3 allele on DD in the presence of the IL-1betaT(3954) allele. The carriers of the COL11A2 minor allele had an increased risk of disc bulges (OR 2.1, 95% CI 1.0-4.2) as compared with non-carriers. The results suggest that the effect of the COL9A3 gene polymorphism on DD might be modified by the IL-1beta gene polymorphism.[1]


  1. Intervertebral disc degeneration in relation to the COL9A3 and the IL-1ss gene polymorphisms. Solovieva, S., Lohiniva, J., Leino-Arjas, P., Raininko, R., Luoma, K., Ala-Kokko, L., Riihimäki, H. European spine journal : official publication of the European Spine Society, the European Spinal Deformity Society, and the European Section of the Cervical Spine Research Society. (2006) [Pubmed]
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