B-cell lymphocyte kinase polymorphisms rs13277113, rs2736340, and rs4840568 and risk of autoimmune diseases: A meta-analysis

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B-cell lymphocyte kinase (BLK) is an inhibitor of B cells that has an important influence on several autoimmune diseases, but there is a lack of comprehensive analysis of its association with autoimmune diseases. Hence, it is meaningful to conduct a comprehensive analysis.


A systematic literature search was performed on the PubMed, ScienceDirect, and Web of Science databases up to June 30, 2016. The data were extracted and quality-assessed before conducting the meta-analysis. The odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs) were assessed with the STATA version 12.0 software. Subgroup and sensitivity analysis were conducted to explore potential sources of heterogeneity.


Altogether, 33 studies with 68,874 cases and 90,684 controls, 24 studies with 31,095 cases and 39,077 controls for rs13277113, 21 studies with 26,388 cases and 40,635 controls for rs2736340, and 4 studies with 11,391 cases and 10,972 controls for rs4840568 were included in this meta-analysis. The results revealed that the BLK rs13277113 and rs2736340 polymorphisms increased the risk of autoimmune diseases in the total analysis (A vs G: OR = 1.33, 95% CI = 1.27–1.39, P < .01; T vs C: OR = 1.34, 95% CI = 1.27–1.41, P < .01), and rs4840568 was positively associated with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) (A vs G: OR = 1.32, 95% CI = 1.22–1.43, P = .01).


This meta-analysis shows that the BLK (rs13277113, rs2736340, rs4840568) polymorphisms may be a risk factor for developing autoimmune diseases, especially for Asian populations and SLE.

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