Fractalkine Receptor/Ligand Genetic Variants and Carotid Intima-Media Thickness

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Background and Purpose—

The fractalkine ligand/receptor (CX3CL1/CX3CR1) complex is important in inflammatory responses and has been associated with vascular disease. We determined whether genetic variants in CX3CL1 and CX3CR1 are associated with carotid atherosclerosis in 2 large European populations.


18 polymorphisms in CX3CL1 and CX3CR1 were genotyped in 2763 German community individuals (CAPS). Positive results were tested for replication on 6049 French community individuals (3C Study).


In CAPS we found associations of common carotid artery (CCA)-IMT with 2 CX3CL1 (rs170364, rs614230) and 1 CX3CR1 (rs3732378) variants, and significant interactions of CX3CR1 rs11129820, rs3732378, and rs614230 variants with smoking and alcohol consumption in relation with CCA-IMT. None of these were replicated in 3C. In 3C only there was a borderline significant association of rs3732378 with carotid plaques.


In almost 9000 subjects, we found no replicable associations of CX3CL1 and CX3CR1 polymorphisms with CCA-IMT or plaque.

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