Medical genetics: a marker for Stevens-Johnson syndrome

Nature. 2004 Apr 1;428(6982):486. doi: 10.1038/428486a.


Stevens-Johnson syndrome and the related disease toxic epidermal necrolysis are life-threatening reactions of the skin to particular types of medication. Here we show that there is a strong association in Han Chinese between a genetic marker, the human leukocyte antigen HLA-B*1502, and Stevens-Johnson syndrome induced by carbamazepine, a drug commonly prescribed for the treatment of seizures. It should be possible to exploit this association in a highly reliable test to predict severe adverse reaction, as well as for investigation of the pathogenesis of Stevens-Johnson syndrome.

MeSH terms

  • Alleles
  • Asian People / genetics
  • China / epidemiology
  • Diethylcarbamazine / adverse effects
  • HLA-B Antigens / genetics*
  • HLA-B15 Antigen
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Stevens-Johnson Syndrome / chemically induced
  • Stevens-Johnson Syndrome / epidemiology
  • Stevens-Johnson Syndrome / genetics*
  • White People / genetics


  • HLA-B Antigens
  • HLA-B*15:02 antigen
  • HLA-B15 Antigen
  • Diethylcarbamazine