Analyses of the NRAMP1 and IFN-gamma R1 genes in women with Mycobacterium avium-intracellulare pulmonary disease AMERICAN JOURNAL OF RESPIRATORY AND CRITICAL CARE MEDICINE Huang, J. H., Oefner, P. J., Adi, V., Ratnam, K., Ruoss, S. J., Trako, E., Kao, P. N. 1998; 157 (2): 377-381


Mycobacterium avium-intracellulare (MAI) pulmonary disease causes substantial morbidity in a population of older, HIV-negative women without preexisting lung disease. The cause for disease susceptibility in these patients is unknown, although their relative phenotypic homogeneity suggests the existence of a common, subtle immune deficiency. An investigation was undertaken to determine if these patients have a defect in their natural resistance-associated macrophage protein (NRAMP1) or interferon gamma receptor 1 (IFN-gammaR1) genes. A point mutation in murine nramp, an autosomal recessive gene controlling resistance to intracellular organisms, correlates with overwhelming Mycobacterium bovis infection in mice. The corresponding region in human NRAMP1, two coding polymorphisms and one promoter NRAMP1 polymorphism, as well as two IFN-gammaR1 polymorphisms, were analyzed to determine if an allele was present to correlate with disease. Genomic DNA was purified from eight women with MAI pulmonary disease and four controls. Regions of interest were amplified by PCR; three sites were analyzed by restriction fragment length polymorphisms, and three were analyzed using denaturing high-performance liquid chromatography. The NRAMP1 promoter polymorphism of 18 additional random controls was analyzed by microsatellite sizing. No allelism was found in NRAMP1 corresponding to the murine mutation, or in the two coding regions. In the NRAMP1 promoter microsatellite, 3 of 8 patients were heterozygous for a dinucleotide sequence insertion, as were 10 of 22 controls. None of the patients had either of the two known IFN-gammaR1 mutations. In conclusion, in women with MAI pulmonary disease, there is no evidence for a genetic defect in NRAMP1 or IFN-gammaR1 to correlate with disease.

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