Brain. 2004 May 20
Barton A, Woolmore JA, Ward D, Eyre S, Hinks A, Ollier WE, Strange RC, Fryer AA, John S, Hawkins CP, Worthington J.
Arthritis Rheumatism Campaign Epidemiology Research Unit, University of Manchester, Manchester, UK.
Twin, family and adoption studies suggest that susceptibility to multiple sclerosis is substantially mediated by genetic factors.
Linkage to human chromosome 17q, homologous to a locus linked to experimental animal models of multiple sclerosis, has been widely replicated and the region likely to harbour a multiple sclerosis susceptibility gene has recently been refined to a 2.5 Mb region of 17q22-24.
The candidate multiple sclerosis susceptibility gene, protein kinase C alpha (PRKCA), maps within this interval and association with 35 single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers, spanning the gene with a median spacing of 7.8 kb, was tested using a case-control approach.
Single-marker geno-type and estimated haplotype frequencies were compared in UK unrelated cases with multiple sclerosis (n = 184) and healthy controls (n = 340) in order to investigate association with susceptibility to disease.
A haplotype of two SNPs mapping to the proximal region of the gene showed evidence for association with susceptibility (Bonferroni-corrected P value = 1.1 x 10(-5)).
These findings suggest that further investigation of the PRKCA gene is warranted, particularly in cohorts with evidence of linkage to 17q22.
Most of the SNPs investigated in this study were intronic and screening to identify disease-associated functional mutations is now required.
Our results suggest that the promoter and proximal gene region should be not only included but prioritized in any screening strategy.