Introduction: This study aimed to determine the association between serum mannose-binding lectin (MBL) levels, gene polymorphisms and late-onset sepsis (LOS) in preterm infants. Methods: Infants with <37 gestational weeks were categorized into two groups according to the presence of LOS during their hospitalization. An MBL level <700 ng/ml was defined as deficiency, MBL2 gene were analyzed. Results: Overall, 153 preterm infants were included. MBL deficiency was found to be more common in the LOS group (p = 0.02). The rate of Gram-negative sepsis was higher in MBL2 variant-type (p = 0.01). In the logistic regression analysis, MBL levels <700 ng/ml were found to have a significant effect on LOS development (odds ratio: 2.692, 95% confidence interval 1.196-5.8, p = 0.02). Conclusions: MBL deficiency is an important risk factor for the development of LOS. Furthermore, there is an association between MBL2 gene polymorphism and Gram-negative sepsis.