Polymorphisms in the CD14 gene associated with pulmonary function in farmers

Tricia D LeVan, Susanna G Von Essen, Debra Romberger, G. Patrick Lambert, Fernando D. Martinez, Monica M. Vasquez, James A. Merchant

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


Rationale and Objectives: Farmers experience airway obstruction, which may be attributable in part to endotoxin inhalation. CD14 is a receptor for endotoxin. Materials and Methods: Based on our findings of increased circulating CD14 associated with the CD14/ -159 T allele, we hypothesized that carriers of this allele would have decreased lung function among endotoxin-exposed individuals. CD14/-159TT farmers (n = 19) had significantly lower lung function as measured by FEV1 (p = 0.028) and mean forced expiratory flow during the middle half of the FVC (FEF25-75) (p = 0.05) compared with farmers with the C allele (n = 78). Also, farmers with the CD14/-1619GG genotype (n =11) were associated with lower lung function (FEV1, p = 0.008; FEF25-75, p = 0.009) compared with farmers with the A allele (n = 86). Results: No association between CD14/-550 and lung function was observed (FEV1, p = 0.32; FEF25-75, p = 0.11). Increased prevalence of wheezing was reported in farmers homozygous for CD14/-159T (p = 0.013) or CD14/-1619G (p = 0.019) compared with farmers with the CC or AA genotype, respectively. No association was found between TLR4/Asp299Gly and lung function or wheeze. Conclusion: We conclude that the CD14/-159 or CD14/-1619 loci may play a role in modulating lung function and wheeze among agricultural workers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)773-779
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine
Issue number7
StatePublished - Apr 1 2005


  • Endotoxin
  • Farming
  • Lipopolysaccharide
  • Occupational exposure
  • Wheeze

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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