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1.  Association of the CTLA-4 1722TC polymorphism and systemic lupus erythematosus: a systematic review and meta analysis 
Background: Cytotoxic T lymphocyte-associated antigen-4 (CTLA-4) is an important negative regulator of Tcell responses. The -1722TC polymorphism of the CTLA-4 gene may be associated with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) risk, but related results from previous studies have been inconsistent. We carried out a metaanalysis to assess this association more precisely.
Methods: A systematic search through PubMed, Science Direct, and OVID, Iran doc, Iranmedex and SID (Scientific Information Database) databases was performed with the last search updated on December 30, 2011. The odds of ratio (OR) and its 95% confidence interval (95%CI) were used to assess the strength of the association. We evaluated both fixed and random effect models, depending on the presence of between-study heterogeneity. The analyses were conducted using STATA software, version 11.0.
Results: A total of 9 independent studies on the CTLA-4 gene -1722TC polymorphism and SLE, including 1422 cases and 1417 controls were used in this meta-analysis. In the present meta-analysis, we found a significant association between -1722TC polymorphism and SLE risk in the overall analysis (TT versus TC/CC: OR=1.18, 95%CI 0.84-1.66, p= 0.32; TT/TC versus CC: OR = 2.06, 95%CI 1.07–3.99, p= 0.03; TT versus CC: OR = 2.32, 95%CI 1.62–3.32, p< 0.001; TC versus CC: OR = 1.99, 95%CI 1.42–2.78, p<0.001; TT versus TC: OR = 1.2, 95%CI 0.86–1.66,p= 0.28; T versus C: OR = 1.22, 95%CI 0.91–1.64,p= 0.16). In the subgroup analysis by ethnicity, -1722TC polymorphism was significantly associated with SLE risk in Asian population.
Conclusion: This meta-analysis suggests a significant association between -1722TC polymorphism and SLE susceptibility. Large-scale and well-designed case-control studies are necessary to validate the risk identified in the present meta-analysis.
PMCID: PMC4322325
Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE); 1722TC polymorphism; CTLA-4; Meta-analysis
2.  Modifiable Risk of Breast Cancer in Northeast Iran: Hope for the Future. A Case-Control Study 
Breast Care  2011;6(6):453-456.
Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women. Its prevalence is increasing annually by 2%. The determination of modifiable risk factors has been the subject of various studies. The aim of this study was to determine risk factors of breast cancer in women in Golestan Province.
Patients and Methods
This case-control study was conducted among women with breast cancer recorded in the cancer registry system between 2004 and 2006 (n = 134), and their age-matched healthy neighbors (n = 133). Data were statistically analyzed.
Age at marriage, menarche and pregnancy, breast feeding, positive family history, marital status, and educational level were not significantly correlated with risk of breast cancer, but age at menopause (< 46.6 years) was significantly correlated (95% confidence interval 1.15–7.37; p = 0.021). Live births, still births, and infant deaths were not significantly different between the 2 groups. For other variables, such as smoking history, no odds ratio was calculated.
Results show that there is no significant correlation between variables and risk of breast cancer in our population, except for age at menopause. A large cohort study is recommended.
PMCID: PMC3290010  PMID: 22419899
Breast cancer; Risk factors; Golestan; Case-control study
3.  Endothelin-1 in systemic sclerosis 
Scleroderma is a systemic disorder with unknown etiology most notably characterized by skin thickening and organ damage. Endothelin-1 (ET-1) plays a role in skin fibrosis. The aim of this study was survey and comparison of ET-1 level in Systemic Sclerosis (SSc) patients with and without digital ulcer.
Material and Methods:
A cross-sectional analytical study conducted among the 95 patients with scleroderma in 2006 who were referred to the Rheumatology clinic in Shariati hospital of Tehran. The questionnaire was completed for every patient. Plasma level of endothelin-1 was also measured in all of them. The data was analyzed using SPSS software and statistical tests.
The result indicated, relationship among digital ulcers and digital pitting scars with plasma level of ET-1 were significant (P value < 0.05). We could not find any significant relationship between age and plasma level of ET-1.
These data indicate plasma level of ET-1 in scleroderma patients with digital ulcer was higher than patients without digital ulcer. Thus, increase in plasma level of ET-1 could be effective in vascular damage, fibrosis, and skin thickness.
PMCID: PMC3481917  PMID: 23130253
Digital ulcer; endothelin; scleroderma

Results 1-3 (3)