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Epilepsia. 2008 Dec;49(12):2087-91. doi: 10.1111/j.1528-1167.2008.01719.x. Epub 2008 Jul 14.

Carbamazepine and phenytoin induced Stevens-Johnson syndrome is associated with HLA-B*1502 allele in Thai population.

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Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand.

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  • Epilepsia. 2009 Apr;50(4):971.



Previous studies found a strong association between HLA-B*1502 and carbamazepine (CBZ)-induced Stevens-Johnson syndrome (SJS) in Han Chinese, but not in Caucasian populations. Even in Han Chinese, the HLA-B*1502 was not associated with CBZ-induced maculopapular eruptions (MPE). This study seeks to identify whether HLA-B*1502 is associated with CBZ- or phenytoin (PHT)-induced SJS or MPE in a Thai population.


Eighty-one Thai epileptic patients between 1994 and 2007 from the Chulalongkorn Comprehensive Epilepsy Program were recruited. Thirty-one subjects had antiepileptic drug (AED)-induced SJS or MPE (6 CBZ-SJS, 4 PHT-SJS, 9 CBZ-MPE, 12 PHT-MPE), and 50 were AED-tolerant controls.


For the first time, a strong association between HLA-B*1502 and PHT-induced SJS was found (p = 0.005). A strong association was also found between the HLA-B*1502 and CBZ-induced SJS (p = 0.0005), making Thai the first non-Chinese population demonstrating such an association. Some patients, who were HLA-B*1502 and suffered from CBZ-induced SJS, could be tolerant to PHT and vice versa. This suggests that HLA-B*1502 may be a common attribute required for a Thai patient to develop SJS from these two AEDs; other different elements, however, are also needed for each AED. In addition, no association between HLA-B alleles and CBZ- or PHT-induced MPE was found.


CBZ- and PHT-induced SJS, but not MPE, is associated with HLA-B*1502 allele in Thai population.

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