Background: Many common chronic inflammatory disorders have strong HLA gene associations, particularly with MHC class II. Allergic fungal rhinosinusitis (AFS) and hypertrophic sinus disease (HSD) are chronic sinonasal mucosal inflammatory disorders. Allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis, a disorder analogous to AFS, was recently reported to have HLA-MHC class II associations.
Objective: We sought to determine whether MHC class II is also associated with AFS and HSD.
Methods: HLA DNA genotyping was obtained on 44 patients with AFS and 30 patients with HSD (of which 21 were atopic).
Results: Sixty-six percent of patients with AFS carried at least one HLA-DQB1 *03 allele; DQB1 *0301 and DQB1 *0302 were the most frequent allelic variants (odds ratio [OR] vs healthy subjects = 8.22; 95% CI, 4.30-15.73; P < .001; OR vs all patients with HSD = 1.93; 95% CI, 1.09-3.41; P < .01; OR vs atopic patients with HSD = 2.57; 95% CI, 1.46-4.53; P < .001). Of the 31 patients with AFS and positive Bipolaris spicifera cultures, 68% had DQB1 *03, with DQB1 *0301 and DQB1 *0302 being most frequent (OR vs healthy subjects = 8.93; 95% CI, 4.65-17.15; P < .001; OR vs patients with HSD = 2.10; 95% CI, 1.18-3.73; P < .001). Of the 30 patients with HSD, 50% carried DQB1 *03 (OR vs healthy subjects = 4.25; 95% CI, 2.25-8.02; P < .001) but differed in frequencies of DQB1 *03 allelic variants compared with patients with AFS ( P = .0004). For HSD, nonatopic subjects had the highest DQB1 *03 association (OR vs healthy subjects = 8.63; 95% CI, 4.50-16.54; P < .001). DQB1 *03 allelic variants did not correlate with allergy skin test results, atopic status, total serum IgE levels, culture results, asthma, or aspirin-nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug hypersensitivity.
Conclusion: Patients with AFS and HSD have HLA-DQB1 *03 alleles as a risk factor for disease, with AFS having the highest association. However, they differ in DQB1 *03 allelic variant frequencies, suggesting several potential roles for MHC class II in their immunopathogenesis.