OBJECTIVES--To elucidate the role of HLA-DRB, -DQA, and -DQB genes in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) who developed gold induced nephropathy. METHODS--Southern blot analysis of HLA-DRB, -DQA, and -DQB genes was performed on DNA from 27 patients with RA with gold induced nephropathy, 37 patients with RA who were treated with gold but did not develop nephropathy, and 122 ethnically matched normal subjects. RESULTS--The 4.7 kb DQA1/Taq I band associated with DQA1*0501 and DR3 and DR5 was found in 16 (59%) patients with gold induced nephropathy compared with five (14%) patients without gold induced nephropathy. CONCLUSION--It is concluded that HLA-DQA region genes may be an important susceptibility factor for the development of gold induced nephropathy in patients with RA.
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