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Associations of a non-synonymous variant in SLC2A9 with gouty arthritis and uric acid levels in Han Chinese subjects and Solomon Islanders
  1. Hung-Pin Tu1,2,
  2. Chung-Jen Chen3,
  3. Silent Tovosia4,
  4. Albert Min-Shan Ko5,
  5. Chien-Hung Lee6,
  6. Tsan-Teng Ou7,
  7. Gau-Tyan Lin8,
  8. Shun-Jen Chang2,
  9. Shang-Lun Chiang8,
  10. Hung-Che Chiang2,9,
  11. Ping-Ho Chen9,
  12. Shu-Jung Wang5,
  13. Han-Ming Lai3,
  14. Ying-Chin Ko2,5,9
  1. 1Graduate Institute of Medicine, College of Medicine, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
  2. 2Department of Public Health and Environmental Medicine, College of Medicine, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
  3. 3Division of Rheumatology, Allergy and Immunology, Department of Internal Medicine, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital-Kaohsiung Medical Center, Chang Gung University College of Medicine, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
  4. 4National Referral Hospital, Ministry of Health and Medical Services, Honiara, Solomon Islands
  5. 5Center of Excellence for Environmental Medicine, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
  6. 6Department of Public Health, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
  7. 7Division of Rheumatology, Department of Internal Medicine, Kaohsiung Medical University Hospital, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
  8. 8Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Kaohsiung Medical University Hospital, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
  9. 9Division of Environmental Health and Occupational Medicine, National Health Research Institutes, Miaoli, Taiwan
  1. Correspondence to Dr Ying-Chin Ko, Kaohsiung Medical University, 100 Shih-Chuan 1st Road, Kaohsiung, Taiwan; ycko{at}


Objective To study the associations of gout, tophi and uric acid levels with the gout-related SLC2A9 (solute carrier family 2, member 9) single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) between two different racial groups.

Methods Eight SLC2A9 SNPs were genotyped in 109 subjects with gout and 191 control subjects from Han Chinese men in Taiwan and 69 subjects with gout and 168 control subjects from the Solomon Islands.

Results Non-synonymous SLC2A9 rs3733591 Arg265His was associated with risk for gout and tophaceous gout in Han Chinese subjects (p=0.0012 and p=0.0044). The genetic effect of this SNP on tophaceous gout was replicated in Solomon Islanders (p=0.0184). Patients with SLC2A9 Arg265His risk C-allele consistently had a higher risk for tophi (OR 2.05–2.15) than non-tophi (OR 0.91–1.62). SNP rs3733591 described 3.68% and 5.98% of the total variability in uric acid levels for Chinese and Solomon Island subjects, respectively.

Conclusion Non-synonymous SNP rs3733591 variant within the SLC2A9 gene from two geographically diverse populations served as an important genetic checkpoint for tophaceous gout and increased uric acid levels.

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  • H-PT and C-JC contributed equally to this work.

  • Funding This study was supported by grants from the National Health Research Institutes (NHRI-98A1-PDCO-0307101), Center of Excellence for Environmental Medicine, Kaohsiung Medical University, Ministry of Education (KMU-EM-98-1-1) and the National Science Council (NSC97-2314-B-037-007 and NSC97-3112- B-400-001).

  • Competing interests None.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Ethics approval This study was conducted with the approval of the Kaohsiung Medical University Institutional Review Board (KMU-IRB 93-063) and the National Health Research Institute and Ethics and Research Committee (NHRI-EC 0940102) of the Ministry of Health and Medical Services in the Solomon Islands in September 2006.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.