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Background/AimsAnti-ganglionic nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (gAChR) antibodies are observed in autoimmune diseases, as well as in patients with autoimmune autonomic ganglionopathy. However, the genetic background of anti-gAChR antibodies is unclear. Here, we investigated HLA alleles in autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) patients with or without anti-gAChR antibodies.Methodology/Principal FindingsGenomic DNA from 260 patients with type-1 autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) were genotyped for HLA-A, B, DRB1, and DQB1 loci. Anti-gAChR antibodies in the sera form AIH patients were measured using the luciferase immunoprecipitation system, and examined allelic association in patients with or without anti-gAChR antibodies.Methodology/ MethodsWe detected anti-α3 or -β4 gAChR antibodies in 11.5% (30/260) of patients with AIH. Among AIH patients there was no significant association between HLA-A, B DQB1 alleles and the positivity for anti-gAChR antibodies. Whereas the HLA-DRB1*0403 allele showed a significantly increased frequency in AIH patients with anti-gAChR antibodies compared with those without anti-gAChR antibodies.Conclusions/SignificanceThe frequency of the HLA-DRB1*0403 allele differed among Japanese patients with AIH according to the presence or absence of anti-gAChR antibodies. Our findings suggest that particular HLA class II molecules might control the development of anti-gAChR antibodies in the autoimmune response to gAChR.


  • PLoS ONE

    PLoS ONE 11(1), e0146048, 2016-01

    Public Library of Science



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