Alternative Interleukin 17A/F Locus Haplotypes Are Associated With Increased Risk to Hip and Knee OsteoarthritisRandiK Eftedal Goran Vrgoc Zdravko Jotanovic Zlatko Dembic
We studied the genetic epidemiology of primary large‐joint (hip and knee) osteoarthritis (OA), in order to find disease risk factors by a candidate‐gene approach. We used case–control study in the Croatian Caucasian population. We genotyped 500 OA patients (260 hip, 240 knee; both with total joint replacements) and 597 healthy individuals for single‐nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in interleukin 17A (IL17A) (rs2275913) and IL17F (rs763780 and rs1889570) genes. On the basis of our population and allelic and genotypic frequencies haplotypes were predicted by PHASE software and compared between patients and controls. The three‐SNP haplotype (rs2275913–rs763780–rs1889570) G–C–A confers predisposition to hip (p < 0.005) but not knee OA. The three‐SNP haplotype having opposed nucleotides A–T–G was found significantly associated with 2.6 times higher risk for developing knee (p < 0.02) but not hip OA. The haplotype G–T (IL17A–IL17F; rs2275913–rs763780) is associated with protection to the disease in hip OA (p < 0.01). Our analyses show that two disparate haplotypes within the IL17A‐F gene locus are associated with higher risk to developing hip and knee OA in the Croatian population. The data might suggest a difference in the etiology of hip OA from that of the knee OA, perhaps due to an unknown dissimilarity in vulnerability of these joints to the actions of IL17. Alternatively, other differences in genetic factors like the long non‐protein coding region LINCMD1 and/or microRNA species like miR133b and miR206 found in the vicinity of the IL17 locus might be involved in the observed risk.