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A Meta-Analysis of Apolipoprotein E Gene e2/e3/e4 Polymorphism for Gallbladder Stone Disease
Published: Tuesday, September 25, 2012
Author: Pei Xue et al.

by Pei Xue, Wen-Quan Niu, Zhao-Yan Jiang, Min-Hua Zheng, Jian Fei


Numerous studies have investigated the relationship between apolipoprotein (Apo) E gene polymorphisms and gallbladder stone disease (GSD) across ethnic populations; however, the results are often inconsistent. This meta-analysis aims to comprehensively evaluate the influence of a common e2/e3/e4 polymorphism in Apo E gene on the risk of gallbladder stone disease.


Data were analyzed using the RevMan software (V5.1) and a random-effects model was applied irrespective of between-study heterogeneity. Publication bias was weighed using the fail-safe number.


There were 17 study populations totaling 1773 cases and 2751 controls for e2/e3/e4 polymorphism of Apo E gene. Overall comparison of alleles e2 with e3 in all study populations yielded a 16% decreased risk for GSD (95% confidence interval [95% CI]: 0.68–1.05; P?=?0.31; I2?=?13%), and comparison of alleles e4 with e3 yielded a 25% increased risk (95% confidence interval [95% CI]: 0.97–1.61; P?=?0.0003; I2?=?63%). Subgroup analysis by study design indicated that the magnitude of association in hospital-based studies was largely significantly strengthened for e4 allelic model (odds ratio [OR] ?=?1.46; 95% CI: 1.05–2.02; p?=?0.0007; I2?=?65%). Subgroup analysis by age of controls indicated a remarkably significant elevation in the magnitude of association in age >50 subgroups in e4 allelic model (OR?=?1.50; 95% CI: 1.03–2.19; p?=?0.0009; I2?=?72%). Moreover, subgroup analysis by cases gender indicated a reduction in the magnitude of association in male<30% studies for E2/2 genotypic model (OR?=?0.32; 95% CI: 0.07–1.49; p?=?0.16; I2?=?45%).


Our results reveal that Apo E gene e4 allele is a risk factor of gallbladder stone disease, especially in elder people and Chinese population.