HLA-DRB1*04 alleles in psoriatic arthritis: comparison with rheumatoid arthritis and healthy controls

Hum Immunol. 2001 Nov;62(11):1239-44. doi: 10.1016/s0198-8859(01)00337-8.


Psoriatic arthritis (PsA) is an inflammatory arthritis associated with psoriasis usually seronegative for rheumatoid factor. An increased frequency of HLA-DR4 has been noted in PsA, particularly among patients with a rheumatoid arthritis like (RA) arthritis. The aim of the current investigation was to compare HLA-DRB1*04 alleles in patients with PsA, patients with RA, and healthy controls. Sample size calculations based on the frequency of HLA-DR4 suggested that 90 individuals in each patient group would be sufficient to address our question. Therefore, 90 HLA-DRB1*04 positive patients from each patient group underwent high resolution molecular typing and were included in this study. Although HLA-DRB1*0401 was the most frequent allele in all groups, its frequency among the PsA patients was lower than that of RA patients and controls. HLA-DRB1*0402 was higher among patients with PsA. Patients with RA were more likely to have more than one shared epitope allele than either PsA or the healthy control group. HLA-DQB1 alleles did not contribute further information. We suggest that the differences in the class II HLA epitope(s) may also be related to interaction specificity with another molecule functioning in the immune response to a putative arthritogenic antigen and result in differences in disease expression.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Alleles*
  • Arthritis, Psoriatic / genetics
  • Arthritis, Psoriatic / immunology*
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / genetics
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / immunology*
  • Epitopes
  • Female
  • HLA-DR Antigens / genetics*
  • HLA-DRB1 Chains
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged


  • Epitopes
  • HLA-DR Antigens
  • HLA-DRB1 Chains
  • HLA-DRB1*04:01 antigen
  • HLA-DRB1*04:02 antigen