TLR4 T399I polymorphism and endometriosis in a cohort of Italian women

Enrica Marchionni, Maria Grazia Porpora, Francesca Megiorni, Ilaria Piacenti, A. Giovannetti, Cinzia Marchese, Pierluigi Benedetti Panici, Antonio Pizzuti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Endometriosis is a widespread multifactorial disease in which environmental, genetic, and epigenetic factors contribute to the phenotype. Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs) in genes implicated in pivotal molecular mechanisms have been investigated as susceptible risk factors in distinct populations. Among these, Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) represents a good candidate due to its role in the immune/inflammatory response and endometriosis pathogenesis. Methods: The TRL4 gene T399I SNP (C/T transition, rs4986791) was investigated in 236 Italian endometriosis patients and 150 controls by using the PCR-RFLP method. One-tailed Fisher's exact test was used to compare differences between categorical variables. T399I genotype distribution was evaluated for Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium in both groups using the Chi-squared test for given probabilities. Results: Fisher's exact test comparing C and T allele frequencies showed a difference in the frequency of T alleles between patients and controls (OR = 1.96, 95% confidence interval 0.91-4.23; p-value = 0.0552). Genotype frequencies did not show any significant difference between patients and controls. The homozygous TT genotype was observed in 2% of endometriosis women and not in controls. Conclusions: Our results show that the TLR4 rs4986791 T variant may be considered a genetic risk factor for endometriosis in Italian women. More extensive studies in other populations are needed to confirm this result.

Original languageEnglish
Article number255
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 1 2020


  • Endometriosis
  • T399I polymorphism
  • TLR4

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Biochemistry


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