Glucocorticoid Receptor Beta Splice Variant Expression in Patients With High and Low Activity of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

Folia Histochem Cytobiol. 2007;45(4):339-42.


The glucocorticoid receptor (GR) occurs mainly in two alternative splice variants encoding GRalpha and GRbeta. The GRbeta variant does not contain a GC binding domain and cannot mediate anti-inflammatory GC effects. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) were isolated from venous whole blood of twelve patients with SLE. Ten of the SLE patients exhibited low disease activity while two patients displayed highly active stage of the disease. The quantitative analysis of GRalpha and GRbeta transcripts in PBMC was performed by reverse transcription and real-time quantitative PCR SYBR Green I system. The protein level of GRalpha and GRbeta isoforms in PBMCs was determined by western blotting analysis. We found that the two SLE patients with high disease activity exhibited significantly elevated GRbeta transcript levels and corresponding protein levels in PBMCs. These preliminary findings suggest that increased expression of GRbeta isoform may be associated with relatively more severe clinical presentation of SLE syndrome.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Alternative Splicing / genetics*
  • Demography
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Leukocytes, Mononuclear / metabolism
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / genetics*
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Receptors, Glucocorticoid / genetics*


  • RNA, Messenger
  • Receptors, Glucocorticoid
  • glucocorticoid receptor alpha
  • glucocorticoid receptor beta