Associations between TLR polymorphisms and systemic lupus erythematosus: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Clin Exp Rheumatol. Mar-Apr 2012;30(2):262-5. Epub 2012 Apr 13.


Objectives: The aim of this study was to determine whether the polymorphisms of Toll-like receptor (TLR) confer susceptibility to systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE).

Methods: The authors conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of reports on associations between TLR polymorphisms and SLE susceptibility.

Results: A total of 8 studies (11 separate comparisons) were included in this meta-analysis, which included European and Asian populations. Metaanalysis showed an association between the 2 allele of rs3853839 (TLR7) and SLE in Asian subjects (OR 1.246; 95% CI 1.160, 1.388; p=2×10-9). No studies on rs3853839 (TLR7) and rs352139 (TLR9) have been performed in Europeans. No association was found between SLE and the 2 alleles of the rs5743836 (TLR9) polymorphism in all overall subjects or in Europeans, but one study showed a significant association in Asians (OR 4.243; 95% CI 1.487, 12.10; p=0.007). Furthermore, no association was found between the rs5744168 (TLR5) polymorphism and SLE susceptibility in Europeans or between the rs187084 (TLR8) or rs352140 (TLR9) polymorphisms and SLE susceptibility in Asians.

Conclusions: This meta-analysis suggests that the TLR7 and TLR9 polymorphisms are associated with the development of SLE in Asians. Further studies are required to determine whether the TLR polymorphisms contribute to SLE susceptibility in other ethnic groups.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Asian Continental Ancestry Group / genetics
  • Gene Frequency
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease
  • Humans
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / ethnology
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / genetics*
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / immunology
  • Odds Ratio
  • Phenotype
  • Polymorphism, Genetic*
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors
  • Toll-Like Receptor 7 / genetics
  • Toll-Like Receptor 9 / genetics
  • Toll-Like Receptors / genetics*


  • TLR7 protein, human
  • TLR9 protein, human
  • Toll-Like Receptor 7
  • Toll-Like Receptor 9
  • Toll-Like Receptors