The genome-wide linkage disequilibrium screen for loci associated with genetic difference between allergic and nonallergic asthma was conducted with 763 autosomal STR markers and included 190 asthmatic children. Evidence for association with differences between the two forms of asthma was observed for 36 STR markers. Marker-to-marker synergetic effect and by simulation resampling tests revealed D5S2011, D6S305, and D9S286 were important loci in allergic asthma while D6S1574, D8S1769, and D19S226 were important in nonallergic asthma. Our results show strong genetic evidence that these markers play an important role in defining allergic and nonallergic asthma and provides important candidates of susceptible genes in these two categories of asthma. This study further shows that asthma is, indeed, a heterogeneous group of underlying diseases and, although with similar clinical phenotypes, may have different clinical severities, outcomes, and need more tailor-made management.
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