Background Pemphigus is an autoimmune disease which is more frequently seen in certain ethnic groups such as Jews. It is thought that exogenous factors may induce pemphigus in genetically predisposed individuals. Recent reports on HLA antigens indicate an increased frequency of HLA-class II antigens particularly HLA-DR4 among Jewish patients. Herein we investigated the antigen frequencies of HLA-A, B, C, HLA-DR and DQ in Turkish patients with pemphigus.
Methods HLA class I and II antigens were typed by microdroplet lymphocyte cytotoxicity test in 33 patients with pemphigus and 100 healthy individuals.
Results HLA-B35, B44, CW4, DR4, DR14, DQ8 and DQ4 antigens were significantly high in the study group whereas HLA-DR11, DQ7 and DQ2 antigens were high among the controls. The most striking differences were observed in HLA class II antigens. HLA DR14-DQ8 and HLA B35-DR14 haplotypes were the most frequently observed ones in the study group.
Conclusions We postulate that HLA-B35, B44, CW4, DR4, DR14, DQ4 and DQ8 antigens may be responsible for susceptibility to pemphigus while HLA-DR11, DQ7 and DQ2 antigens may have a protective role in the Turkish population.