Estrogen receptor alpha genotype is associated with a reduced prevalence of radiographic hip osteoarthritis in elderly Caucasian women

K. Lian, L. Lui, J. M. Zmuda, M. C. Nevitt, M. C. Hochberg, J. M. Lee, J. Li, Nancy E Lane

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42 Scopus citations


Purpose: This study evaluated the association between polymorphisms in the estrogen receptor (ER) alpha gene (ESR1) and prevalent and incident radiographic hip osteoarthritis (RHOA) in a large, well-defined prospective cohort of elderly Caucasian women. Methods: Prevalent and incident RHOA was evaluated from all available pelvis X-rays obtained from the Study of Osteoporotic Fractures at baseline and after a mean of 8.3 years. Evaluable DNA samples were available from 4746 of these subjects. RHOA cases were defined by published methods. The ESR1 polymorphisms at intron I (Pvu II for a T/C substitution and Xba I for an A/G substitution) were genotyped in the context of a multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification followed by allele-specific single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) detection with immobilized oligonucleotide probes in linear arrays. Multiple logistic regression was performed to estimate odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CI) associated with the T/C and A/G polymorphisms. Results: RHOA was present in 12.1% of subjects, of whom 325 had joint space narrowing (JSN) score ≥3 and 130 had an osteophyte score ≥2 and JSN score ≥2. There was a significant reduction in the odds of prevalent RHOA for individuals with the C/C compared to T/T genotype at the Pvu II site with an OR of 0.71 (95% CI: 0.55-0.92) (P = 0.01). Adjustments for age, weight, height, hip Bone mineral density (BMD) and estrogen use did not alter the relationship between the C/C genotype and reduced risk of RHOA, with an OR of 0.71 (95% CI: 0.54-0.94) (P = 0.01). The risk of incident RHOA was reduced for the Pvu II C/C compared to the T/T genotype (P = 0.11). Also, the reduced risk of incident RHOA in C/C subjects varied by estrogen use. There was no association between the Xba I G/G or G/A genotypes and RHOA with OR of 0.82 (95% CI: 0.61-1.10) (P = 0.19) compared to women with A/A genotype. Conclusions: We conclude that the C/C genotype of the ER alpha Pvu II polymorphism was associated with a modestly reduced risk of prevalent and incident RHOA in elderly Caucasian women. Additional work is required to understand how the intron I ESR1 polymorphism may alter joint degeneration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)972-978
Number of pages7
JournalOsteoarthritis and Cartilage
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2007


  • Estrogen receptors
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Polymorphisms

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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