Associations between cytokine/cytokine receptor single nucleotide polymorphisms and humoral immunity to measles, mumps and rubella in a Somali population

N. Dhiman, I. G. Ovsyannikova, R. A. Vierkant, V. S. Pankratz, R. M. Jacobson, G. A. Poland

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42 Scopus citations


We genotyped a Somali population (n = 85; age ≤30 years) for 617 cytokine and cytokine receptor single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) using Illumina GoldenGate genotyping to determine associations with measles, mumps and rubella immunity. Overall, 61 significant associations (P ≤ 0.01) were found between SNPs belonging to cytokine receptor genes regulating T helper (Th)1 (IL12RB2, IL2RA and B) and Th2 (IL4R and IL10RB) immunity, and cytokine (IL1B, TNFA, IL6 and IFNB1) and cytokine receptor (IL1RA, IFNAR2, IL18R1, TNFRSF1A and B) genes regulating innate immunity and variations in antibody levels to measles, mumps and/or rubella. SNPs within two major inflammatory cytokine genes, TNFA and interleukin (IL) 6, showed associations with measles-specific antibodies. Specifically, the minor allele variant of rs1799964 (TNFA -1211 C>T) was associated with primarily seronegative values (median enzyme immunoassay index values ≤0.87; P = 0.002; q = 0.23) in response to measles disease and/or vaccination. A heterozygous variant CT for rs2069849 (IL6 +4272C>T; Phe201Phe) was also associated with seronegative values and a lower median level of antibody response to measles disease and/or vaccination (P = 0.004; q = 0.36) or measles vaccination alone (P = 0.008). Several SNPs within the coding and regulatory regions of cytokine and cytokine receptor genes showed associations with mumps and rubella antibody levels but were less informative as strong linkage disequilibrium patterns and lower frequencies for minor alleles were observed among these SNPs. Our study identifies specific SNPs in innate immune response genes that may play a role in modulating antibody responses to measles vaccination and/or infection in Somali subjects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)211-220
Number of pages10
JournalTissue Antigens
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2008



  • Antibodies
  • Cytokine
  • Cytokine receptors
  • Immunity
  • Measles-mumps-rubella
  • Polymorphisms

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Biochemistry
  • Genetics

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