Background: CD14 is found as a membrane-anchored molecule on the surface of monocytes, macrophages and granulocytes as well as in a soluble serum protein (sCD14) form. A single nucleotide polymorphism at position -159 in the promoter of CD14 has been shown to be associated with levels of sCD14 and total serum IgE. It has been believed that the polymorphism of the CD14 gene is associated with the atopic phenotype. Objective: We attempted to determine whether -159C/T polymorphism in the promoter of CD14 is associated with Korean patients with atopic dermatitis (AD) and to assess its influence on their clinical subtypes. Method: We performed polymerase chain reaction of the promoter of the CD14 gene on the genomic DNA from 346 Korean patients with AD and 116 non-AD controls using the restriction fragment-length polymorphism method. The serum levels of the total and specific IgE were measured by latex photometry immunoassay and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay in patients with AD. Result: No significant differences in the CD14 genotype frequencies were found between the groups. The polymorphism was associated with neither the total and specific IgE concentrations nor the generation of the different clinical subtypes of AD. Conclusion: Our results suggest that the CD14 (C-159T) polymorphism may not be a major regulator in Korean patients with AD.
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