Atopic asthma occurs in genetically susceptible individuals in the presence of environmental factors. Recently, the costimulation signal from CD80-CD86 to CD28/CTLA-4 has been suggested to play an important role in the development of atopic asthma. In the present study, we analyzed three polymorphic regions within the CTLA-4 gene, an A/G substitution in exon 1 position 49, a C/T base exchange in the promoter position –318 and an (AT)n repeat polymorphism in the 3′-untranslated region of exon 4, and a CD28 gene polymorphism with a T/C substitution in intron 3 position +17 in 120 patients with atopic asthma and 200 normal controls. The polymorphism frequencies of CTLA-4/CD28 genes in patients did not differ from those in normal controls. Thus, the present study was unable to reveal any association between CTLA-4/CD28 gene polymorphisms and atopic asthma in the Japanese population.

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