PloS one

Genetic Loci Associated with Allergic Sensitization in Lithuanians.

PMID 26214689


Allergic rhinitis (AR) is a common and complex disease. It is associated with environmental as well as genetic factors. Three recent genome-wide association studies (GWAS) reported altogether 47 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with AR or allergic sensitization (AS) in Europeans and North Americans. Two follow up studies in Swedish and Chinese replicated 15 associations. In these studies individuals were selected based on the self-reported AR, or AR/AS diagnosed using blood IgE test or skin prick test (SPT), which were performed often without restriction to specific allergens. Here we performed third replication study in Lithuanians. We used SPT and carefully selected set of allergens prevalent in Lithuania, as well as Illumina Core Exome chip for SNP detection. We genotyped 270 SPT-positive individuals (137 Betulaceae -, 174 Poaceae-, 199 Artemisia-, 70 Helianthus-, 22 Alternaria-, 22 Cladosporium-, 140 mites-, 95 cat- and 97 dog dander-sensitive cases) and 162 SPT-negative controls. We found altogether 13 known SNPs associated with AS (p ≤0.05). Three SNPs were found in Lithuanians sensitive to several allergens, and 10 SNPs were found in Lithuanians sensitive to a certain allergen. For the first time, SNP rs7775228:C was associated with patient sensitivity to dog allergens (F_A=0,269, F_U=0.180, P=0.008). Thus, careful assessment of AS allowed us to detect known genetic variants associated with AS/AR in relatively small cohort of Lithuanians.