Genetic Variants of the Fatty Acid Desaturase Gene Cluster Are Associated with Plasma LDL Cholesterol Levels in Japanese Males

  • SONE Yasuko
    Institute of Environmental Science for Human Life, Ochanomizu University
  • KIDO Toshimi
    Institute of Environmental Science for Human Life, Ochanomizu University
  • AINUKI Tomomi
    Graduate School of Humanities and Sciences, Ochanomizu University
  • SONODA Mariko
    Graduate School of Humanities and Sciences, Ochanomizu University
  • ICHI Ikuyo
    Graduate School of Humanities and Sciences, Ochanomizu University
  • KODAMA Satoru
    Department of Health Management Center, Mito Kyodo General Hospital
  • SONE Hirohito
    Department of Internal Medicine, Niigata University Faculty of Medicine
  • KONDO Kazuo
    Graduate School of Humanities and Sciences, Ochanomizu University
  • MORITA Yutaka
    National Institution for Academic Degrees and University Evaluation
  • EGAWA Shigenobu
    Fukuoka Institute of Occupational Health
  • KAWAHARA Kazuo
    Department of Health Policy Science, Graduate School of Tokyo Medical and Dental University
  • OTSUKA Yuzuru
    Graduate School of Humanities and Sciences, Ochanomizu University
  • FUJIWARA Yoko
    Graduate School of Humanities and Sciences, Ochanomizu University

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Abstract

Fatty acid (FA) compositions in tissues are related to metabolic disorders, and consequently the appropriate management of underlying FA compositions in tissues is considered to be important. However, the relationship among the serum lipid profiles, the FA composition of the red blood cell (RBC) membranes and genetic variations in the fatty acid desaturase (FADS) genes in Japanese men is unclear. In this study, the subjects recruited were 137 Japanese men, 40 to 60 y old, who had a regular health checkup. Their serum lipid profile and the relative FA composition of the RBC membranes were measured. They were genotyped for the single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) rs174553, rs174546, rs99780 and rs174583 in FADS gene. Multiple regression analysis was conducted to detect the relationship among hyperlipidemia, the FA composition of the RBC and the FADS genotypes. As a result, the homozygous genotype for the minor alleles in rs174553, rs174546, rs99780 were found to be associated with lower low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) levels and a lower LDL-C/total-cholesterol ratio. The homozygous genotype for the minor alleles reduced the risk of high LDL-C level (R2=0.50, β=−0.20, p=0.009), whereas, the arachidonic acid (AA) levels in the carriers of the homozygous genotype for the minor alleles tended to be lower compared with the carriers of the major alleles. However, no significant differences were observed in any FA level among the three genotypes for four SNPs. These results indicate that the appropriate management of serum LDL-C levels depending on genetic predisposition in FADS genotypes should be encouraged.

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