SNCA-Rep1 polymorphism correlates with susceptibility and iron deficiency in restless legs syndrome

Xiao Ying Zhu, Hong Ming Wang, Ting Ting Wu, Te Liu, Ya Jing Chen, Xuan Li, Tian Jiao Chen, Ye Liu, Xiao Jin Zhang, Xi Xi Wang, Yue Zhang, William G. Ondo, Yun Cheng Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: Brain iron disequilibrium and dopaminergic dysfunction are key pathophysiological features of Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS). Rep1 polymorphism in the promotor region of SNCA is associated with risk of Parkinson's disease, however its association with RLS and iron status is unclear. Objective: To investigate SNCA-Rep1 polymorphism in RLS and its phenotypes. Methods: We recruited RLS patients as well as age and gender matched healthy controls. Demographic information and clinical features of RLS were recorded. Laboratory examinations were performed to exclude possible secondary causes. Results: 215 RLS patients and 369 healthy controls were included. We found that the Rep1 allele 0 homozygosity significantly decreased RLS risk (OR: 0.345; P < 0.0001, and remained significant after the Bonferroni correction). Phenotypic analysis demonstrated that longer Rep1 alleles were associated with increased susceptibility to iron deficiency (53.0% vs 36.1%, P = 0.017), however had no phenotypic significant effects on age, gender, onset age, duration, RLS family history, severity, laterality, extra body involvement and seasonal fluctuation. Multivariate logistic regression analyses confirmed long Rep1 allele was associated with higher risk of iron deficiency in RLS after adjusting for potential confounding factors. In detail, Rep1 allele 2 homozygosity was prone to a higher risk of peripheral iron deficiency in RLS (OR: 4.550, P = 0.006, remained significant after the Bonferroni correction). Conclusion: The SNCA-Rep1 variability modified RLS risk and influenced peripheral iron deficiency in this group of Chinese RLS patients. Rep1 allele 0 homozygosity decreased the risk of RLS, while homozygous allele 2 increased the risk of nonanemic iron deficiency in RLS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)12-17
Number of pages6
JournalParkinsonism and Related Disorders
StatePublished - Dec 2020


  • Dopamine
  • Iron
  • Rep1
  • Restless legs syndrome
  • SNCA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Clinical Neurology


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