The etiology of the autoimmune thyroid, Hashimoto's thyroiditis (HT) is not very clear. However, genetic susceptibility is thought to play a critical role. The vitamin D receptor (VDR)-related endocrine system has been demonstrated to be able to carry out modulation of the immune response. Here, we investigated whether single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) of VDR are associated with HT patients. VDR SNP was detected by polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based restriction analysis in 109 patients with HT and 90 normal controls. Significant differences were found in the genotype distribution of VDR SNP between Hashimoto's thyroiditis patients and controls (P=0.0458). Allelic frequency of the VDR gene distinguished HT patients from controls (P=0.0089). The results revealed a significant difference between HT patients and normal controls in VDR SNP and a statistic correlation between VDR-FokI polymorphisms and HT formation. It could be concluded that patients who carry the C/C homozygote of the VDR-FokI gene polymorphism in exon 2 may have a higher risk of developing HT in Chinese patients in Taiwan.
(c) 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.