S18Y polymorphism in the UCH-L1 gene and Parkinson's disease: evidence for an age-dependent relationship

Mov Disord. 2003 Feb;18(2):130-7. doi: 10.1002/mds.10326.


We studied the relationship between Parkinson's disease (PD) and the S18Y polymorphism in the UCH-L1 gene and the effect on this relationship of age at onset, smoking, and pesticides. Patients requested free health coverage for PD to the Mutualité Sociale Agricole (MSA), the French health insurance organization for people whose work is related to agriculture. Controls requested reimbursement of health expenses to the MSA. A maximum of three controls were matched to each case. Analyses included participants with both parents born in Europe. There were no differences in S18Y genotypes between patients (n = 209; 67% SS, 32% SY, 1% YY) and controls (n = 488; 66% SS, 30% SY, 4% YY). The relationship between PD and S18Y was modified by age at onset (P = 0.03). The Y allele was inversely associated with PD for patients with onset before 61 years (odds ratio [OR] = 0.53; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.29-0.99); there was no association for older patients (62-68 years: OR = 1.21; 95% CI, 0.67-2.20; >68 years: OR = 1.24; 95% CI, 0.67-2.31). Among patients, Y carriers had a later onset than noncarriers (P = 0.04). These findings were not modified or confounded by smoking and pesticides. In this community-based case-control study, carriers of the Y allele were at decreased risk of developing PD at a young age, independently of pesticides and smoking.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Age of Onset
  • Aged
  • Alleles
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Environmental Exposure / adverse effects
  • Female
  • Genotype
  • Humans
  • Insurance, Health
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Parkinson Disease / epidemiology
  • Parkinson Disease / genetics*
  • Pesticides / adverse effects
  • Polymorphism, Genetic / genetics*
  • Risk Factors
  • Smoking / adverse effects
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Thiolester Hydrolases / genetics*
  • Ubiquitin Thiolesterase


  • Pesticides
  • Thiolester Hydrolases
  • Ubiquitin Thiolesterase