Glutathione S-transferases (GST) are antioxidant enzymes with frequent genetic polymorphisms. Homozygosis for gene deletion (“null” genotype) of GSTM1 and GSTT1, causing decrease of the antioxidant potential of the organism, is frequent, with variable frequency in different ethnic contexts. Although oxidative stress notoriously plays a role in the pathogenesis of psoriasis, few studies exist on the association between GSTM1/GSTT1 genotype and psoriasis, with different results. We aimed to assess the frequency of GSTM1/GSTT1 polymorphisms in Southern Italian psoriatic patients and controls and investigate the association of the GSTM1/GSTT1 genotype with individual and disease parameters. To this aim, the GSTM1/GSTT1 genotype of 148 psoriatic patients and 148 age- and sex-matched controls was defined by PCR on oral mucosa cells. GSTT1 null was associated with psoriasis (55.4% of patients vs. 25% of controls, p = 9.58 × 10−8, odds ratio 3.73), while GSTM1 null was not. The GSTM1/GSTT1 “double null” genotype conferred an even higher odds ratio for psoriasis (5.94). The association between psoriasis and GSTT1 null was stronger in women (54.1% of patients vs. 19.7% of controls, p = 8.13 × 10−5) than in men (56.3% of patients vs. 28.7% of controls, p = 0.0002). No association was found between GSTM1/GSTT1 genotype and psoriasis severity, age of onset or comorbidities (psoriatic arthritis, metabolic syndrome). The remarkable differences among the few available data on the association between GSTM1/GSTT1 polymorphisms and psoriasis suggest the need for further studies, on different and larger populations, to improve knowledge on the pathogenesis of psoriasis and possibly provide more precise and personalised prevention and treatment in the future.
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