Socioeconomic Variables Associated with Immune Biomarkers in Asthmatic Children
Saturday, March 3, 2018
South Hall A2 (Convention Center)
Akua O. Nyarko-Odoom, Student, Mary Prunicki, MD PhD, Wenming Zhang, PhD, Xiaoying Zhou, Kari C. Nadeau, MD PhD FAAAAI
RATIONALE: The link between socioeconomic status (SES) and asthma has been investigated in numerous studies. Asthma has been linked to immune dysfunction. We hypothesized that low SES is associated with increased immune dysregulation.

METHODS: Subjects (n=191) aged 7-9 were recruited from Fresno, CA, an area with high ambient air pollution and increased asthma prevalence. Cytometry by Time of Flight (CyToF) was used to analyze percentages of Treg, Th1, Th2, and Th17 cells. For epigenetic measurements, gDNA was isolated and pyrosequenced. All subjects completed a detailed social and medical history questionnaire. Multivariate linear regression controlling for age, race, season, gender, BMI percentile, and asthma status was used for analysis.

RESULTS: Preliminary data demonstrate that income was positively correlated with averaged CpG site methylation levels for interferon gamma (IFNg) (p=.008). Income was not associated with Th1, Th2, Th17 or Treg levels. Crowding (number of people/number of rooms in home) was not associated with T helper cell populations, nor methylation levels.

CONCLUSIONS: Preliminary results suggest that higher income is associated with reduced immune responses from the IFNg proinflammatory gene. Future studies may include investigating associations between cytokine markers and additional socioeconomic variables.