Influence of β2 adrenergic receptor genotype on risk of nocturnal ventilation in patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy

Eli F. Kelley, Troy J. Cross, Eric M. Snyder, Craig M. McDonald, Eric P. Hoffman, Luca Bello

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a progressive neuromuscular disease resulting in severe respiratory derangements. As such, DMD patients are at a high risk of nocturnal hypoventilation, thereby requiring nocturnal ventilation (NV). To this end, NV is an important clinical milestone in the management of DMD. Emerging evidence suggests that ß2 adrenergic receptors (ADRB2) may play a role in determining respiratory function, whereby more functional ADRB2 genotype variants (e.g., Gly16) are associated with improved pulmonary function and respiratory muscle strength. These findings suggest that the more functional ADRB2 genotype may help to preserve respiratory function in patients with DMD. The purpose of this study was to identify the influence of ADRB2 genotype on the risk of NV use in DMD. Data from the CINRG Duchenne Natural History Study including 175 DMD patients (3-25 yrs) were analyzed focusing on ADRB2 genotype variants. Time-to-event analyses were used to examine differences in the age at prescription of full-time NV use between genotypes. There were no differences between genotype groups in age, height, weight, corticosteroid use, proportion of ambulatory patients, or age at loss of ambulation. DMD patients expressing the Gly16 polymorphism had a significantly (P < 0.05) lower mean age at NV prescription compared with those patients expressing the Arg16 polymorphism (21.80 ± 0.59 yrs. vs 25.91 ± 1.31 yrs., respectively). In addition, a covariate-adjusted Cox model revealed that the Gly16 variant group possessed a 6.52-fold higher risk of full-time NV use at any given age compared with the Arg16 polymorphism group. These data suggest that genetic variations in the ADRB2 gene may influence the age at which DMD patients are first prescribed NV, whereby patients with the Gly16 polymorphism are more likely to require NV assistance at an earlier age than their Arg16 counterparts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number221
JournalRespiratory Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Oct 16 2019


  • beta2-adrenergic receptor
  • Duchenne muscular dystrophy
  • Genotype
  • Nocturnal ventilation
  • Respiratory
  • Risk

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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