The Role of Toll-Like Receptor Polymorphisms in Acute Pancreatitis Occurrence and Severity

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Toll-like receptors (TLRs) are damage-associated molecular patterns receptors, which are essential in the activation of the inflammasome cascade, required for the initiation of inflammation. We hypothesized that changes in the function of these receptors caused by genetic polymorphisms in their encoding genes could determine acute pancreatitis (AP) incidence or severity.


Two hundred sixty-nine patients and 269 controls were included. Acute pancreatitis diagnosis criteria were abdominal pain, increased serum amylase levels, and positive findings on abdominal imaging. The patients were observed until discharge. Blood samples were obtained, determining the following TLRs: TLR1 rs5743611, TLR2 rs5743704, TLR3 rs3775291, TLR3 rs5743305, TLR4 rs4986790, TLR4 rs4986791, TLR5 rs5744174, TLR6 rs5743795, TLR7 rs2302267, TLR9 rs352140, and TLR10 rs4129009.


No TLR polymorphism was related to AP incidence. Regarding severity, CC genotype patients in TLR3 rs3775291 had an increased risk for severe pancreatitis (CC odds ratio [OR], 2.426; P = 0.015). In addition, TLR6 rs5743795 GG genotype patients had a lower risk for severe AP (GG OR, 0.909; P < 0.05). Intensive care unit admission was related to TLR5 rs5744174 homozygote TT carriers (TT OR, 3.367; P = 0.036).


Our article points to genetic polymorphisms in TLR3 and TLR6 as having a plausible role in the occurrence of severe AP.

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