Purpose: We recently demonstrated that a polymorphism in codons 22 and 23 of the glucocorticoid receptor gene is associated with relative glucocorticoid resistance, greater insulin sensitivity, and lower total and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels. In the present study, we investigated whether the ER22/23EK polymorphism is associated with survival, cholesterol levels, and two predictors of mortality: serum C-reactive protein and interleukin 6 levels.
Methods: We studied 402 men (mean [+/- SD] age, 77.8 +/- 3.6 years). C-reactive protein was measured by a highly sensitive method using a latex-enhanced immunoephelometric assay. Interleukin 6 was determined by a commercially available immulite assay.
Results: After a follow-up of 4 years, 73 (19%) of 381 noncarriers died, while none of the 21 ER22/23EK carriers had died (P = 0.03). C-reactive protein levels were about 50% lower in ER22/23EK carriers (P = 0.01). There were no differences in interleukin 6 levels.
Conclusion: Carriers of the ER22/23EK polymorphism have better survival than noncarriers, as well as lower C-reactive protein levels.