The association of HLA-B8 with visceral disease in systemic sclerosis

Clin Exp Immunol. 1978 Mar;31(3):351-6.


Seventy-one patients with systemic sclerosis (SS) were typed for twenty-seven HLA alleles of the A and B loci, and the findings were related to both the extent of visceral disease and tests of cellular immune competence in a subgroup of fifty-two of these patients. Nineteen pa;ients with widespread visceral involvement and more rapidly progressive disease had an increased frequency of HLA-B8 (relative risk = 4.14; P less than 0.05) when compared to thirty-three less severely affected patients and 3000 controls. Patients with severe and progressive disease also had defective cell-mediated immunity with reductions in both the numbers of circulating thymus-dependent (T) lymphocytes and in the lymphocyte transformation response to phytohaemagglutinin. These findings suggest that a genetic factor, such as an abnormal immune response gene, may be involved in the progression of the disease.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Female
  • HLA Antigens / analysis*
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Cellular
  • Leukocyte Count
  • Lymphocyte Activation
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Scleroderma, Systemic / genetics
  • Scleroderma, Systemic / immunology*
  • T-Lymphocytes


  • HLA Antigens