This case-control study investigated whether variations within the APOE-ε gene were associated with having a convex facial profile (skeletal Class II) compared to exhibiting a straight or concave facial profile (Class I or Class III) among patients with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Associations between the apnea-hypopnea index (AHI) and body mass index (BMI) scores for these OSA patients were also examined in the context of facial profile.
OSA patients with an AHI ≥ 15 were recruited from a sleep clinic and classified by facial and dental occlusal relationships based on a profile facial analysis, lateral photographs, and dental examination. Saliva was collected as a source of DNA. The APOE-ε1-4 allele-defining single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) rs429358 and rs7412 were genotyped. A χ2 analysis was used to assess Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium and for association analysis (significance at p < 0.05). ANOVA and Fisher exact test were also used.
Seventy-six Caucasian OSA patients participated in the study—25 Class II cases and 51 non-Class II cases. There was no association of the APOE-ε4 allele with facial profile among these OSA patients. Class II OSA patients had significantly lower BMIs (30.7 ± 5.78) than Class I (37.3 ± 6.14) or Class III (37.8 ± 6.17) patients (p < 0.001), although there was no statistical difference in AHI for Class II patients compared with other groups.
OSA patients with Class II convex profile were more likely to have a lower BMI than those in other skeletal groups. In fact 20% of them were not obese, suggesting that a Class II convex profile may influence or be associated with OSA development independent of BMI.
Roedig JJ; Phillips BA; Morford LA; Van Sickels JE; Falcao-Alencar G; Fardo DW; Hartsfield JK; Ding X; Kluemper GT. Comparison of BMI, AHI, and apolipoprotein E ε4 (APOE-ε4) alleles among sleep apnea patients with different skeletal classifications. J Clin Sleep Med 2014;10(4):397-402.