Background: The aim of the research is to study the human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class II allele frequencies in chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyradiculoneuropathy (CIDP) associated with anti-neurofascin 155 (NF155) antibodies.
Methods: Thirteen anti-NF155+ and 35 anti-NF155 negative (anti-NF155neg) CIDP patients were included in a case-control study. The frequencies of the DRB1 HLA allele were analyzed in all patients while DQ frequencies were only studied in patients sharing the DRB1*15 allele. In silico HLA-peptide binding and NF155 antigenicity, predictions were performed to analyze overlap between presented peptides and antigenic regions.
Results: DRB1*15 alleles (DRB1*15:01 and DRB1*15:02) were present in 10 out of 13 anti-NF155+ CIDP patients and in only 5 out of 35 anti-NF155neg CIDP patients (77 vs 14%; OR = 20, CI = 4.035 to 99.13). DRB1*15 alleles appeared also in significantly higher proportions in anti-NF155+ CIDP than in normal population (77 vs 17%; OR = 16.9, CI = 4.434 to 57.30). Seven anti-NF155+ CIDP patients (53%) and 5 anti-NF155neg CIDP patients had the DRB1*15:01 allele (OR = 7, p = 0.009), while 3 anti-NF155+ CIDP patients and none of the anti-NF155neg CIDP patients had the DRB1*15:02 allele (OR = 23.6, p = 0.016). In silico analysis of the NF155 peptides binding to DRB1*15 alleles showed significant overlap in the peptides presented by the 15:01 and 15:02 alleles, suggesting functional homology.
Conclusions: DRB1*15 alleles are the first strong risk factor associated to a CIDP subset, providing additional evidence that anti-NF155+ CIDP patients constitute a differentiated disease within the CIDP syndrome.
Keywords: Antibodies; CIDP; HLA DRB1*15; NF155.