Associations of HLA-DRB1 alleles with anti-citrullinated protein antibody-positive and anti-citrullinated protein antibody-negative rheumatoid arthritis in northern east part of Turkey

Fahri Uçar, Erhan Çapkin, Murat Karkucak, Burcu Yücel, Mehmet Sönmez, Ahmet Alver, Neşe Kaklikkaya, Mehmet Tosun, Emel Alemdaroğlu, Mustafa Solak
International Journal of Rheumatic Diseases 2012, 15 (6): 538-45

AIM: The aim of this study was to investigate the associations between human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-DRB1 alleles with genetic susceptibility to rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and production of antibodies against cyclic citrullinated peptide (anti-CCP antibody) and rheumatoid factor (RF) in Turkish RA patients.

METHODS: We studied 291 RA patients and 253 controls. Genotyping was performed by polymerase chain reaction with sequence-specific oligonucleotide probes hybridization method. Serum levels of anti-CCP antibody, IgM-RF and high sensitive C-reactive protein titers were measured by commercial kits using immunological methods.

RESULTS: We found that HLA-DRB1*04 and *09 alleles were associated in anti-CCP+ and anti-CCP+ RA patients (P < 0.0001 and P < 0.001, respectively), while DRB1*01 and *04 were determined to be higher in RF+ RA patients (P < 0.001 and P < 0.0001, respectively). Moreover, DRB1*11 and DRB1*13 alleles were determined to be lower in RF and anti-CCP/RF+ RA patients (P < 0.001 for both). HLA-DRB1*04 was identified as a common responsible allele for susceptibility to the disease in anti-CCP, RF and anti-CCP/RF- RA patients (P = 0.0018, P = 0.0004 and P = 0.0023, respectively). HLA-DRB1*13 allele alone was found to be protective against to anti-CCP+ and RF- RA (P = 0.0003 and P = 0.006, respectively). On the contrary, there was no protective allele in anti-CCP/RF- RA as well as anti-CCP- RA patients.

CONCLUSION: This study indicates that associate and protective HLA-DRB1 allele distributions are different in autoantibody (anti-CCP or RF or anti-CCP/RF)+ RA and autoantibody- RA patients, with exceptions of DRB1*04 and DRB1*13.

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