Human major histocompatibility complex class I allele HLA-B27 is associated with a group of diseases called spondyloarthropathies. In reactive arthritis (ReA), the disease is triggered by certain infections, e.g. gastroenteritis caused by Salmonella. The host/microbe interaction is abnormal in susceptible individuals leading to inefficient elimination of arthritis-triggering bacteria, fragments of them, or both, after the initial infection. Using transfected human monocytic U937 cell lines, we demonstrate that the expression of the HLA-B27 antigen does not influence the uptake of S. enteritidis into U937 cells in vitro. Interestingly, HLA-B27 remarkably impairs the elimination of S. enteritidis within the HLA-B27 transfected U937 cells. The impaired elimination of ReA-triggering microbes by HLA-B27+ monocytes may offer an explanation for the persistence of ReA-triggering microbes in susceptible HLA-B27+ individuals. This modulation of the host/microbe interaction by HLA-B27 may have an important role in the pathogenesis of ReA.