NOS1 polymorphism is associated with atopy but not exhaled nitric oxide levels in healthy children

Pediatr Allergy Immunol. 2003 Aug;14(4):261-5. doi: 10.1034/j.1399-3038.2003.00065.x.


Exhaled nitric oxide (FENO) is raised in atopy. The mechanism for this is unclear. The aim of this study was to investigate whether the number of AAT repeats in intron 20 of the NOS1 gene, recently associated with variations in FENO in adults with asthma and cystic fibrosis, was associated with the raised FENO in healthy atopic children. Eighty-seven healthy children (44 girls, 42 atopic, age range 6-18 years) underwent measurements of FENO, spirometry, airway responsiveness and skin prick testing. Genotyping was carried out to determine the number of AAT repeats. There was no association between the number of AAT repeats and FENO in either the whole sample of healthy children (n = 87) or in the subsample of healthy atopics (n = 42). However, a greater number of atopic children had two high repeat alleles compared with non-atopic children (33.3% vs. 13.6%, respectively, p = 0.03). This suggests that variations in the NOS1 gene may contribute to atopy without this relationship being reflected by FENO.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Alleles
  • Child
  • Child Welfare
  • Cohort Studies
  • Exhalation / genetics*
  • Female
  • Forced Expiratory Volume / physiology
  • Genotype
  • Humans
  • Hypersensitivity, Immediate / genetics*
  • Hypersensitivity, Immediate / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Nitric Oxide / genetics*
  • Nitric Oxide / metabolism*
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase / genetics*
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase Type I
  • Polymorphism, Genetic / genetics*
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Reference Values
  • Respiratory Hypersensitivity / genetics
  • Respiratory Hypersensitivity / metabolism
  • Skin Tests
  • Spirometry
  • Statistics as Topic
  • Trinucleotide Repeats / genetics
  • Vital Capacity / physiology


  • Nitric Oxide
  • NOS1 protein, human
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase Type I