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JOURNAL ARTICLE

Killer cell immunoglobulin-like receptor gene diversity in the Tibetan ethnic minority group of China

Bo-feng Zhu, Hong-dan Wang, Chun-mei Shen, Ya-jun Deng, Guang Yang, Qing-ju Wu, Peng Xu, Hai-xia Qin, Shuan-liang Fan, Ping Huang, Li-bin Deng, Rudolf Lucas, Zhen-Yuan Wang
Human Immunology 2010, 71 (11): 1116-23
20650299
The aim of this study was to analyze killer immunoglobulin-like receptor (KIR) gene polymorphisms in the Tibetan ethnic minority of China. To that purpose, we have studied KIR gene frequencies and genotype diversities of 16 KIR genes and three pseudogenes (2DL1, 2DL2, 2DL3, 2DL4, 2DL5A, 2DL5B, 2DS1, 2DS2, 2DS3, 2DS4*001/002, 2DS4*003-007, 2DS5, 3DL1, 3DL2, 3DL3, 3DS1, 2DP1, 3DP1*001/002/004, and 3DP1*003) in a population sample of 102 unrelated healthy individuals of the Tibetan population living in Lhasa city, Tibet Autonomous Region of China. Tibetans mainly live in "the roof of the world," the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau of China and surrounding areas stretching from central Asia in the North and West to Myanmar and mainland China in the East, and India, Nepal, and Bhutan to the south. KIR gene frequencies and statistical parameters of Tibetan ethnic minority were calculated. Fifteen KIR genes were observed in the 102 tested Tibetan individuals with different frequencies. The allelic frequencies of the 15 KIR genes ranged from 0.06 to 0.86. In addition, KIR 2DL1, 2DL4, 3DL2, and 3DL3 were found to be present in every individual. Variable gene content, together with allelic polymorphisms, can result in individualized human KIR genotypes and haplotypes, with the A haplotypes being predominantly observed. The results of tested linkage disequilibrium (LD) among KIR genes demonstrated that KIR genes present a wide range of linkage disequilibrium. Moreover, a comparison of the population data of our study with previously published population data of other ethnic groups or areas was performed. The differences of allelic frequency distribution in KIR2DL2, 2DL3, 2DL5, 3DL1, 2DS1, 2DS2, 2DS3, 3DS1, and 2DP1 were statistically significant among different populations using the statistical method of the standard χ(2) test. In conclusion, the results of the present study can be valuable for enriching the Chinese ethnical gene information resources of the KIR gene pool and for anthological studies, as well as for KIR-related disease research.

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