PLoS One 2015 23;10(9):e0138324. Epub 2015 Sep 23.
CEINGE-Advanced Biotechnology, s. c. a r. l., Naples, Italy.
Background: Celiac disease (CD) has a strong genetic component mainly due to HLA DQ2/DQ8 encoding genes. However, a minority of CD patients are DQ2/DQ8-negative. To address this issue, we retrospectively characterized HLA haplotypes in 5,535 subjects at risk of CD (either relatives of CD patients or subjects with CD-like symptoms) referred to our center during a 10-year period.
Methods: We identified loci DQA1/DQB1/DRB1 by sequence-specific oligonucleotide-PCR and sequence-specific primer-PCR; anti-transglutaminase IgA/IgG and anti-endomysium IgA by ELISA and indirect immunofluorescence, respectively.
Results: We diagnosed CD in 666/5,535 individuals, 4.2% of whom were DQ2/DQ8-negative. Interestingly, DQ7 was one of the most abundant haplotypes in all CD patients and significantly more frequent in DQ2/DQ8-negative (38%) than in DQ2/DQ8-positive CD patients (24%) (p<0.05).
Conclusion: Our data lend support to the concept that DQ7 represents an additive or independent CD risk haplotype with respect to DQ2/DQ8 haplotypes but this finding should be verified in other large CD populations.