OBJECTIVES: IL-1 has a central role mediating inflammation and joint destruction in RA. Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and haplotype structure in the promoter region can modulate IL-1 function. This study examined the effects of four common promoter SNPs in the IL-1 region on susceptibility and clinical characteristics of RA in British Caucasian patients and assessed the risk of RA by meta-analysis of published studies. METHODS: Using PCR-based methods, 756 RA patients and 625 healthy controls (HCs) were genotyped for IL-1A (-889 C/A, rs17561), IL-1B (-511 A/G, rs16944), IL-1B (-1464 C/G, rs1143623) and IL-1B (-3737 G/A, rs4848306) SNPs. Further meta-analysis was performed for IL-1B (-511 A/G) incorporating 3712 RA patients and 2331 HC from six association studies. RESULTS: The IL-1B (-1464 C/G) G allele was found to be less common in the RA group [P = 0.01; odds ratio (OR) 1.24; 95% CI 1.04, 1.48]. There was no association between IL-1 SNPs and the presence of HLA-DRB1 shared epitope, RF or clinical characteristics. Meta-analysis revealed statistically significant association between IL-1B (-511 A/G) and RA (P = 0.02; pooled OR 1.13; 95% CI 1.02, 1.26). CONCLUSIONS: There may be a protective effect in RA from the IL-1B (-1464 C/G) G variant. No direct association between the polymorphisms studied and clinical severity characteristics were observed. Further meta-analysis revealed IL-1B (-511 A/G) to be associated with increased susceptibility to RA.

Original publication




Journal article


Rheumatology (Oxford)

Publication Date





1768 - 1770


Arthritis, Rheumatoid, Case-Control Studies, Disease Progression, Female, Genetic Predisposition to Disease, Genotype, Humans, Interleukin-1beta, Male, Middle Aged, Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide, Promoter Regions, Genetic, Radiography