Association of a functional TNF variant with Plasmodium falciparum parasitaemia in a congolese population
Several studies have provided evidence of both helpful and harmful effects of TNF on the outcome of Plasmodium falciparum malaria infection. Several TNF polymorphisms that are located within non-coding regions have been associated with parasitaemia, mild malaria or severe malaria. We investigated the association of TNF1304 (rs3093664), TNF-308 (rs1800629), TNF-238 (rs361525) and TNF-244 (rs673) with mild malaria and symptomatic maximum parasitaemia in a population-based design (n = 310). We obtained nominal evidence for an association between symptomatic maximum parasitaemia and TNF-308, TNF-238, and TNF-244 on the one hand, and between the number of mild malaria attacks and TNF-244 on the other hand. After accounting for multiple tests, we confirmed the association of symptomatic maximum parasitaemia with TNF-244. We further provide bioinformatics and experimental evidence that TNF-244 has a cis-regulatory effect. This is the first report that emphasizes the potential role of TNF-244 in malaria.