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We have read with interest three related papers that were recently published in this journal.1–3 Taken together, the findings reported in these papers (summarised in online supplementary note) suggest that loss-of-function PRSS1 promoter variants can protect against pancreatitis. The other side of the coin is however that gain-of-function PRSS1 promoter variants predispose to pancreatitis. It therefore follows that the risk-associated [rs4726576C; rs10273639C] allele shares a common pathogenetic mechanism with the previously reported trypsinogen duplication and triplication copy number variants (CNVs)4 5 as both types of variant predispose to pancreatitis by increasing PRSS1 expression; this mechanism is quite distinct from either the increased activation and/or stability of trypsin(ogen) or misfolding-induced endoplasmic reticulum stress caused by disease-associated PRSS1 missense mutations.6 However, despite both serving to increase PRSS1 expression, the promoter variant and the CNVs differ significantly in terms of the …
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