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Immunol Invest. 2008;37(7):661-74. doi: 10.1080/08820130802111605.

HLA-class II alleles in Egyptian patients with hepatocellular carcinoma.

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  • 1Clinical Immunology Unit, Clinical Pathology Department, Mansoura Faculty of Medicine, Mansoura, Egypt.


Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is linked to environmental, dietary, and life style factors. Its incidence and distribution vary widely among ethnic groups, sex, and geographic regions. HBV and HCV Infection, liver cirrhosis, male gender, and old age are important risk factors of HCC. Variability in outcome following exposure, and the clustering of HCC within families raise the possibility that genetic factors are also involved in susceptibility to HCC. The Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC) plays a key role in anti-virus and tumor defense. HLA polymorphism is implicated in conferring genetic susceptibility to a large number of immune-mediated diseases, including some cancers. The association between HLA class II antigen and HCC in different ethnic populations that has been reported is controversial. Therefore, the aim of this work was to study the association between HLA class II-DRB1 and DQB1 polymorphism and HCC in Egyptian patients and to investigate their role as risk factors for the development of HCC.


HLA-class II (DRB1 and DQB1) typing was done by SSP for 100 subjects; 50 patients suffering from HCC (45 males and 5 females) with age range 40-64 years (51.16 years (y) +/- 6.16); and 50 normal healthy control subjects.


1. A significantly increased frequency of DRB1*04, and DQB1 *02 in HCC patients versus control group (p = 0.016, and 0.032, respectively) was found; 2. A significantly decreased frequency of DQB1*06 (p = 0.032) was found; 3. A significantly increased frequency of DRB1*07 (odds ratio (OR) = 4.929) was found; and 4. A significantly decreased frequency of DRB1*15 (OR = 0.316) was seen. In conclusion, while some alleles are significantly associated with HCC (DRB1*04, DQB1*02) and others are not associated (DQB1*06); therefore, it can be concluded that the DRB1*04 and DQB1*02 alleles might be risk factors for the occurrence of HCC (OR = 4.373 and 3.807, respectively), and DQB1*06 may be a protective allele (OR = 0.259).

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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