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Associations between circulating IL-17 levels and rheumatoid arthritis and between IL-17 gene polymorphisms and disease susceptibility: a meta-analysis
  1. Young Ho Lee1,
  2. Sang-Cheol Bae2
  1. 1Division of Rheumatology, Department of Internal Medicine, Korea University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea
  2. 2Department of Rheumatology, Hanyang University Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases, Seoul, Korea
  1. Correspondence to Professor Young Ho Lee, Division of Rheumatology, Department of Internal Medicine, Korea University Anam Hospital, Korea University College of Medicine, 73, Inchon-ro, Seongbuk-gu, Seoul 02841, Korea; lyhcgh{at}


Objectives To systematically review evidence regarding the relationship between circulating interleukin-17 (IL-17) levels and rheumatoid arthritis (RA), and associations between polymorphisms in IL-17 genes and RA susceptibility.

Method We performed a meta-analysis of serum/plasma IL-17 levels in patients with RA and controls, and evaluated evidence of associations between the rs2275913, rs3819024, rs4711998 and rs8193036 polymorphisms in IL-17A and the rs763780 and rs2397084 polymorphisms in IL-17F and risk for RA.

Results Fourteen studies including 3118 patients with RA and 2725 controls were included. Our meta-analysis revealed that IL-17 levels were significantly higher in the RA group than in the control group (p=3.1×10−6). Subgroup analysis using sample size showed increased IL-17 levels in samples from both small (n≤100) and large (n>100) RA groups (p=1.1×10−4 and p=0.008, respectively). We found evidence of associations between RA and alleles from the IL-17A rs2275913 and IL-17F rs763780 polymorphisms in Caucasians (p=0.003 and p=0.037, respectively). In addition, we found an association between RA and alleles of the IL-17A rs3819024 polymorphism in the pooled RA cohort compared with matched controls (p=0.033). However, no evidence of association was found between the IL-17F rs2397084, IL-17A rs4711998 and IL-17A rs8193036 polymorphisms and RA susceptibility.

Conclusions Our meta-analysis revealed significantly higher circulating IL-17 levels in patients with RA, and found evidence of associations between the IL-17A rs2275913, IL-17F rs763780 and IL-17A rs3819024 polymorphisms and pathogenesis of RA.

  • IL-17
  • Level
  • Polymorphism
  • Rheumatoid arthritis

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  • Contributors YHL designed the study. S-CB and YH-L collected data, performed the statistical analysis, drafted the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

  • Funding This study was supported in part by a grant of the Korea Healthcare technology R&D Project, Ministry for Health and Welfare, Republic of Korea (HI15C2958).

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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