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Interaction of heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) polymorphisms and occupational hazards increases the risk of hypertension in coke oven workers
  1. Jin-Ping Zheng1,2,
  2. Yi Lyu1,
  3. Rui-fang Li3,
  4. Feng-jie Tian1,
  5. Jian-bing Mu4
  1. 1 Department of Health Toxicology, School of Public Health, Shanxi Medical University, Taiyuan, Shanxi, China
  2. 2 Department of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Changzhi Medical College, Changzhi, China
  3. 3 Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, The Second Hospital of Shanxi Medical University, Taiyuan, China
  4. 4 Laboratory of Malaria and Vector Research, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institute of Health, Rockville, Maryland, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Jin-Ping Zheng, Department of Health Toxicology, School of Public Health in Shanxi Medical University, Taiyuan 030001, China; zheng_jp{at}


Objectives The interaction between genetic, epigenetic inheritance and environmental factors determines susceptibility to hypertension. Previous epidemiology studies have shown that coke oven workers who are frequently exposed to various occupational hazards have remarkable increase in the risk for hypertension. Among many genetic variants identified in hypertension, heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) was found to play important roles in the pathogenesis of hypertension and associated diseases. We therefore explore the possible role of HSP70 polymorphisms and their interaction with occupational environment in hypertension risk.

Methods We carried out a case–control study among 367 coke oven workers in northwest China, focused on three common HSP70 polymorphisms (HSP70-1 G190C, HSP70-2 A1267G and HSP70-hom T2437C), and evaluated the association of HSP70 gene polymorphisms with work sites for high risk of hypertension.

Results The results indicated that HSP70-1 GC and CC genotype had 2.73-fold and 4.26-fold increased relative risk (95% CI 1.33 to 5.55 and 1.17 to 15.53), respectively, comparing with HSP70-1 GG genotype. HSP70-2 AG and GG conferred a 47% and 36% reduced risk (95% CI 0.23 to 0.99 and 0.14 to 0.92) comparing with HSP70-2 AA genotype. Further analysis of the interaction of HSP70 polymorphisms with occupational environment indicated a strong positive interaction between HSP70 genotype (HSP70-1 GC+CC, HSP70-2 AA and HSP70-hom TC+CC) and oven top workplace.

Conclusions Collectively, these data indicate that HSP70 polymorphisms interact with occupational hazards might increase the risk of hypertension in coke oven workers.

  • hypertension
  • heat shock protein 70
  • gene-environmental interaction

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  • Contributors J-PZ designed the study, supervised interpretation of the results and drafted and revised the manuscript. YL performed the data acquisition and statistical analysis, participated in writing and editing of the manuscript. RL and FT were responsible for classifying the demand of jobs, assisted with the analysis and provided feedback of the paper. JM wrote and revised the manuscript and participated in data analysis. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

  • Funding This study was supported by the Natural Science Foundation of China under Grant (30872137) and the Key Program for International Cooperation Projects of Shanxi province (201703D421021) and A Project Funded by the Key discipline construction of Shanxi province.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Ethics approval The study protocol was approved by the Human Ethics Approval Committee of Shanxi Medical University (Taiyuan).

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Correction notice This article has been corrected since it first published. The first author’s name has been corrected to ’Jin-Ping Zheng'.