DEFB1 polymorphisms are involved in susceptibility to human papillomavirus infection in Brazilian gynaecological patients

Ludovica Segat, Luisa Zupin, Ronald Rodrigues Moura, Antonio Victor Campos Coelho, Bárbara Simas Chagas, Antonio Carlos de Freitas, Sergio Crovella

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The human beta defensin 1 (hBD-1) antimicrobial peptide is a member of the innate immune system known to act in the first line of defence against microorganisms, including viruses such as human papillomavirus (HPV). In this study, five functional polymorphisms (namely g-52G>A, g-44C>G and g-20G>A in the 5’UTR and c.*5G>A and c.*87A>G in the 3’UTR) in the DEFB1 gene encoding for hBD-1 were analysed to investigate the possible involvement of these genetic variants in susceptibility to HPV infection and in the development of HPV-associated lesions in a population of Brazilian women. The DEFB1 g-52G>A and c.*5G>A single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and the GCAAA haplotype showed associations with HPV-negative status; in particular, the c.*5G>A SNP was significantly associated after multiple test corrections. These findings suggest a possible role for the constitutively expressed beta defensin-1 peptide as a natural defence against HPV in the genital tract mucosa.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)918-922
Number of pages5
JournalMemorias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2014



  • Antimicrobial peptides
  • Cervical lesion
  • DEFB1
  • Genetic polymorphisms
  • Human papillomavirus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)

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