Polymorphisms in cytokine genes influence cognitive and functional performance in a population aged 75 years and above

Vanessa G. Fraga, Henrique C. Guimarães, Antônio L. Teixeira, Maira T. Barbosa, Maria G. Carvalho, Paulo Caramelli, Karina B. Gomes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Objective: To investigate the frequency of the cytokine single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α −308G > A, tumor growth factor (TGF)-β1 codon +10C > T, TGF-β1 codon +25G > C, interleukin (IL)-10 −1082A > G, IL-10 −819C > T, IL-10 −592C > A, IL-6 −174G > C, and IFN-γ +874T > A in a sample of healthy and cognitively impaired elderlies and to verify the probable association between these SNPs and cognitive and functional performance of subjects aged 75 years and above. Methods: 259 Brazilian subjects were included, comprising 81 with cognitive impairment no dementia (CIND) and 54 demented seniors (together made up the cognitively impaired group, CI) and 124 age-matched and gender-matched cognitively healthy controls (CHS). The genotyping was performed by multiplex polymerase chain reaction. The cognitive performance was evaluated by Mini-Mental State Examination Brief Cognitive Screening Battery. The functional performance was accessed by Functional Activities Questionnaire. Results: The CClower genotype of TGF-β1 codon +25G > C was frequent in both patient groups. The TThigher genotype of INF-γ +874T > A was less frequent in the dementia group. IL-10 haplotypes of lower expression were more frequent among CIND and demented patients. In CI, individuals with genetic variants that produce higher expression of TGF-β1, INF-γ, and IL-10 showed better normalized cognitive performance. Additionally, the Alower allele of INF-γ +874T > A was related to worse functional performance in CI, while the Alower allele of TNF-α −308G > A was associated with better cognitive and functional scores in the CIND group. Conclusions: Our findings suggest a potential role for certain cytokine SNPs in the development of CIND and dementia, which may influence the functional and cognitive performance of these patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1401-1410
Number of pages10
JournalInternational journal of geriatric psychiatry
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • cognition
  • cytokines
  • dementia
  • functionality
  • inflammation
  • polymorphisms

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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