Age (Dordrecht, Netherlands)

Regulatory regions of the paraoxonase 1 (PON1) gene are associated with neovascular age-related macular degeneration (AMD).

PMID 22956172


Physiological stress response and oxidative damage are factors for aging processes and, as such, are thought to contribute to neovascular age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Paraoxonase 1 (PON1) is an enzyme that plays an important role in oxidative stress and aging. We investigated association of DNA sequence variants (SNP) within the upstream regulatory region of the PON1 gene with neovascular AMD in 305 patients and 288 controls. Four of the seven tested SNPs (rs705379, rs705381, rs854573, and rs757158) were more frequently found in AMD patients compared to controls (P = 0.0099, 0.0295, 0.0121, and 0.0256, respectively), and all but one (SNP rs757158) are in linkage disequilibrium. Furthermore, haplotype TGGCCTC conferred protection (odds ratio (OR) = 0.76, (CI) = 0.60-0.97) as it was more frequently found in control individuals, while haplotype CGATGCT increased the risk (OR = 1.55, CI = 1.09-2.21) for AMD. These results were also reflected when haplotypes for the untranscribed and the 5'untranslated regions (5'UTR) were analyzed separately. To assess haplotype correlation with levels of gene expression, the three SNPs within the 5'UTR were tested in a luciferase reporter assay. In retinal pigment epithelium-derived ARPE19 cells, we were able to measure significant differences in reporter levels, while this was not observed in kidney-derived HEK293 cells. The presence of the risk allele A (SNP rs705381) caused an increase in luciferase activity of approximately twofold. Our data support the view that inflammatory reactions mediated through anti-oxidative activity may be relevant to neovascular age-related macular degeneration.