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Asian Pac J Allergy Immunol. 2011 Sep;29(3):290-3.

Frequency of the HLA-B*1502 allele contributing to carbamazepine-induced hypersensitivity reactions in a cohort of Malaysian epilepsy patients.

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UKM Medical Molecular Biology Institute (UMBI), Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM), Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.


We describe the association of the HLA-B*1502 allele in 27 epilepsy patients (19 Malays, 8 Chinese) treated with carbamazepine (CBZ) at the UKM Medical Center (UKMMC), 6 with CBZ-Steven Johnson Syndrome (CBZ-SJS), 11 with CBZ-induced rash, 2 with suspected phenytoin-induced rash and 8 negative controls. Our study showed that 10 (6 Malay, 4 Chinese) patients were positive for HLA-B*1502. Out of the 10 patients, six were confirmed to have CBZ-SJS (p = 0.0006), while four patients developed a skin rash. However there were 6 Malay patients and 1 Chinese patient that developed a skin rash after CBZ administration who were not positive for the allele, indicating that there might be more that one allele associated with CBZ-induced hypersensitivity. Another 2 patients were suspected of having phenytoin-induced rash, instead of CBZ, and these patients did not have HLA-B*1502. In conclusion, this study confirmed the association of HLA-B*1502 with CBZ-SJS among Malaysian epilepsy patients, however there might be other genes that could be responsible for the CBZ-induced rash.

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