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The G to C polymorphism at -174 of the interleukin-6 gene is rare in a Southern Chinese population

Zhai, Rihonga; Liu, Geoffreya; Yang, Chaominb; Huang, Chuonhongc; Wu, Chuanrend; Christiani, David C.a

Original Articles

Interleukin-6 is thought to be involved in the pathogenesis of coal workers’ pneumoconiosis. Recently, a functional G to C polymorphism at position −174 of the promoter of the IL-6 gene has been described. We examined the −174 polymorphisms in 259 retired Chinese men from Guangxi province (all retired coal miners). Only one GC heterozygous and no CC homozygous variants were found. Our results suggest that the frequency of the C allele in this Chinese population is lower than in Caucasian and east Indian populations.

aOccupational Health Program, Department of Environmental Health, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts, USA, bDivision of Pneumoconiosis, Guangxi Institute of Occupational Health, Nanning, P. R. China, cDivision of Occupational Health, Guangxi Anti-epidemic and Health Center, Nanning, P. R. China and dGeneral Hospital of Heshan Coal Mine Co. Heshan, Guangxi, P. R. China.

Correspondence to Dr. David C. Christiani, Occupational Health Program, Harvard School of Public Health, 665 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115, USA Tel: +1 617 432 3323; fax: +1 617 432 3441; e-mail:

Sponsorship: This study was supported by Guangxi Scientific Foundation (China, grant no: 9817134), a Fogarty grant from NIH (TW00828) and by NIH grants ES00002 and CA74386.

Received 23 March 2001

Accepted 3 June 2001

© 2001 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.