Background: Genetic susceptibility has a major role in the pathogenesis of acute otitis media (AOM). In the present study, we investigated the variability of 5 cytokine genotypes as related to susceptibility and outcome of AOM in early infancy.
Methods: Single nucleotide polymorphisms in IL-6 (–174 G→C), IL-10 (–592 C→A, –819 C→T and –1082 G→A), TNF-α (–308 G→A), IFN-γ (+874 A→T) and TGF-β1 (codon 10 C→T; codon 25 G→C) genes were investigated and related to clinical course and outcome in 96 infants younger than 9 months with AOM.
Results: Compared with wild genotypes, IL-10 (–592, –819 and –1082) and TGF-β1 (codon 10) genotypes carrying the alternative allele were related to more AOM episodes (P < 0.0001, P < 0.0001, P < 0.0001 and P = 0.002, respectively) and the need for tympanostomy tubes. Furthermore, IL-10 (–1082) and TGF-β1 (codon 10) genotypes carrying the alternative allele were related to later onset of first AOM episode than wild-type genotypes (P = 0.007 and P = 0.039, respectively). No relationship was found about AOM complications.
Conclusions: Our findings suggest that IL-10 and TGF-β1 genotypes are related to the age of AOM onset, multiple AOM episodes and insertion of tympanostomy tubes, pointing to the involvement of anti-inflammatory cytokines in AOM during infancy.
From the *Department of Pediatrics, †Laboratory of Molecular Medicine and Human Genetics, and ‡Department of Internal Medicine, University of Crete, Heraklion, Greece.
Accepted for publication October 29, 2013.
This study was funded by the University of Crete Research Account (ELKE), project 2704.
The authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.
Address for correspondence: Emmanouil Galanakis, MD, PhD, Department of Paediatrics, University of Crete, Heraklion 71003, Greece. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.