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Lee J.-U.,Soonchunhyang Graduate School | Kim J.D.,Soonchunhyang Graduate School | Park C.-S.,Soonchunhyang University
Yonsei Medical Journal | Year: 2015

Over the past three decades, a large number of genetic studies have been aimed at finding genetic variants associated with the risk of asthma, applying various genetic and genomic approaches including linkage analysis, candidate gene polymorphism studies, and genome-wide association studies (GWAS). However, contrary to general expectation, even single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) discovered by GWAS failed to fully explain the heritability of asthma. Thus, application of rare allele polymorphisms in well defined phenotypes and clarification of environmental factors have been suggested to overcome the problem of ‘missing’ heritability. Such factors include allergens, cigarette smoke, air pollutants, and infectious agents during pre- and post-natal periods. The first and simplest interaction between a gene and the environment is a candidate interaction of both a well known gene and environmental factor in a direct physical or chemical interaction such as between CD14 and endotoxin or between HLA and allergens. Several GWAS have found environmental interactions with occupational asthma, aspirin exacerbated respiratory disease, tobacco smoke-related airway dysfunction, and farm-related atopic diseases. As one of the mechanisms behind gene-environment interaction is epigenetics, a few studies on DNA CpG methylation have been reported on subphenotypes of asthma, pitching the exciting idea that it may be possible to intervene at the junction between the genome and the environment. Epigenetic studies are starting to include data from clinical samples, which will make them another powerful tool for research on gene-environment interactions in asthma. © Yonsei University College of Medicine 2015. Source

Kim M.S.,Soonchunhyang University | Kim E.,Konkuk University | Heo J.-S.,Soonchunhyang Graduate School | Bae D.-J.,Soonchunhyang Graduate School | And 11 more authors.
Lung Cancer | Year: 2015

OBJECTIVES: Interleukin (IL)-33 protects against infection and inflammation; however, few studies have explored the relevance of IL-33 in lung cancer patients. We evaluated relation of plasma IL-33 levels with development and progression of lung cancer. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A total of 160 patients with lung cancer and 160 controls with normal lungs were enrolled. Plasma IL-33 levels were measured using a specific sandwich ELISA; these levels were followed-up in 18 patients who underwent surgery and in 14 patients treated with chemotherapy. Malignant lesions and normal lung tissues from 10 cancer patients were subjected to immunohistochemical staining for IL-33. RESULTS: IL-33 levels were significantly lower in cancer patients than normal controls (0.08 vs. 0.38ng/mL, p=0.005). Among cancer patients, IL-33 decreased in a stage-dependent manner from 0.76ng/mL in stage I patients to 0.25ng/mL in those with stage II, 0.08ng/mL in those with stage III, and 0.08ng/mL in those with stage IV (p=0.002). The levels were higher at stage I (p=0.041) and markedly lower at stages III and IV than those of controls (p=0.005 and p=0.001, respectively). A similar pattern was observed when IL-33 levels were analyzed by T stage; the levels were 0.39ng/mL at T1/T2 vs. 0.08ng/mL at T3/T4 (p=0.001). However, no difference was noted when stage N1 levels were compared with N2 and N3 levels (p=0.058), or between stage M0 and M1 levels (p=0.147). IL-33 levels gradually decreased after surgical resection of malignant lesions (from 1.075 to 0.756ng/mL, p=0.006), but were unchanged after chemotherapy (0.705 vs. 0.829 ng/mL, p=0.875). On immunohistochemical staining, bronchial epithelial and vascular endothelial cells of normal lung tissues mainly expressed IL-33. CONCLUSIONS: Plasma IL-33 levels are associated inversely with progression of lung cancer. The observed decreases may be attributed to lung volume reduction containing bronchial epithelium and vascular endothelium as the sources of IL-33. © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved. Source

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