Association of interleukin-10 gene single nucleotide polymorphisms with rheumatoid arthritis in a Chinese population

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Purpose of the study

Increasing numbers of studies show that interleukin (IL)-10 plays a key role in the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases including rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and acts as an immunomodulatory cytokine. The purpose of the present study was to analyse the relationship between gene single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the IL-10 gene and RA susceptibility.

Study design

We genotyped three SNPs (rs1800890, rs3024495, rs3024505) of the IL-10 gene in a Chinese population of 354 RA patients and 367 controls. Genotyping was conducted using TaqMan SNP genotyping assays. Plasma IL-10 levels were measured by ELISA.


The A allele of the rs1800890 variant was significantly related to decreased risk for RA compared with the T allele (A vs T: OR 0.580, 95% CI 0.345 to 0.975, P=0.038). No significant association between the genotype distribution of these SNPs and RA susceptibility was detected. The genotype effect of the dominant model was also evaluated, but no statistical difference was found. Further analysis in RA patients demonstrated that none of these SNPs were associated with rheumatoid factor (RF) or anti-citrullinated protein antibody (anti-CCP). In addition, no significant differences in plasma IL-10 levels were observed among RA patients with different genotypes.


The IL-10 rs1800890 variant might contribute to RA susceptibility in the Chinese population. Replication studies in different ethnic groups are required to further examine the critical role of IL-10 gene variation in the pathogenesis of RA.

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