Variants of alpha 1-antitrypsin in Puerto Rican children with asthma

Chest. 1993 Mar;103(3):812-5. doi: 10.1378/chest.103.3.812.


A survey of 393 Puerto Rican and 354 non-Hispanic pediatric patients at Beth Israel Hospital, New York, revealed a significantly larger percentage of asthmatic subjects among Puerto Ricans, confirming findings of a study of Puerto Rican adults in New York. Assays of alpha 1-antitrypsin (AAT) concentration and phenotypes in 61 Puerto Rican asthmatic children revealed a significantly larger number with an S or Z variant in AAT phenotype. The AAT concentration was not a significant variable in this relationship, since four of five subjects with intermediate deficient AAT concentrations and a PiM phenotype were among control nonasthmatic Puerto Rican subjects. A family history of asthma was more common among asthmatic than control subjects and was most common for variant AAT phenotypes in either asthmatic or control subjects. We speculate that the S or Z variant of AAT affects the inflammatory response in such a way as to predispose to asthma.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Asthma / blood*
  • Asthma / epidemiology
  • Asthma / ethnology
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Child
  • Female
  • Genetic Variation*
  • Hispanic Americans* / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Male
  • New York City / epidemiology
  • Phenotype
  • Prevalence
  • Puerto Rico / ethnology
  • alpha 1-Antitrypsin / analysis*


  • alpha 1-Antitrypsin