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Keywords:

  • HLA;
  • ARMS-PCR;
  • molecular typing;
  • class I

Molecular typing for HLA class I was introduced in the 12th International Histocompatibility Workshop. Following a pilot study using three methods, sequence specific oligotyping (SSO), reverse dot blot and amplification refractory mutation system (ARMS)-PCR, the ARMS-PCR method was selected for use. A great advantage of an ARMS-PCR method is that, unlike the other two methods, it can determine whether sequence motifs are in cis or in trans, as ARMS-PCR detects two cis located motifs per reaction using forward and reverse sequence specific primers. Resolution was designed to be low to medium level for HLA-A, -B and -C alleles. Two hundred and fifty class I kits and 83 HLA-A2 subtyping kits were distributed. The A2 subtyping kit used a two round nested PCR system to identify all of the A2 alleles known at the time. Typing results on control DNA samples distributed with both the kits showed a very satisfactory performance. Since the 12th Workshop, the kits have been developed with the addition of new primers and primer mixes to increase the resolution of the test.