Background A complex interaction of host genetic and environmental factors may be relevant in the development of Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori)-related gastro-duodenal diseases. RANTES is a potent chemoattractant peptide for memory T lymphocytes and eosinophils, and has been shown to be enhanced in H. pylori-infected gastric mucosa. We aimed to clarify the effect of RANTES functional promoter polymorphism on the risk of gastro-duodenal diseases in a Japanese population. Methods Four hundred and eighty-three subjects, comprising 106 gastric ulcer, 52 duodenal ulcer, and 325 non-ulcer subjects, were included in this study. Restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) analysis was performed for polymorphisms at -28 C/G in the RANTES gene promoter region. Gastritis scores of antral gastric mucosa were assessed according to the updated Sydney system. Results There were no significant differences in the RANTES promoter genotype distributions among non-ulcer subjects, ulcer patients, and gastric and duodenal ulcers. However, the degree of intestinal metaplasia was significantly lower among G carriers in H. pylori-infected subjects aged 60 years or older (C/C vs. G carriers; 1.28 ± 1.02 vs. 0.83 ± 0.89, P = 0.0357). In addition, we also found that the same genotype held a lower risk of more severe intestinal metaplasia in H. pylori-infected female subjects (C/C vs. G carriers; 0.91 ± 1.03 vs. 0.41 ± 0.73, P = 0.0443). Conclusion The polymorphism of RANTES promoter is not associated with the susceptibility to peptic ulcer diseases, but the -28 G carrier is associated with a reduced risk of developing more severe intestinal metaplasia in H. pylori-positive subjects aged 60 years and older and in female subjects.
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