An association analysis of the HLA gene region in latent autoimmune diabetes in adults.
Desai M., Zeggini E., Horton VA., Owen KR., Hattersley AT., Levy JC., Walker M., Gillespie KM., Bingley PJ., Hitman GA., Holman RR., McCarthy MI., Clark A.
AIMS/HYPOTHESIS: Pathophysiological similarities between latent autoimmune diabetes in adults (LADA) and type 1 diabetes indicate an overlap in genetic susceptibility. HLA-DRB1 and HLA-DQB1 are major susceptibility genes for type 1 diabetes but studies of these genes in LADA have been limited. Our aim was to define patterns of HLA-encoded susceptibility/protection in a large, well characterised LADA cohort, and to establish association with disease and age at diagnosis. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Patients with LADA (n = 387, including 211 patients from the UK Prospective Diabetes Study) and non-diabetic control subjects (n = 327) were of British/Irish European origin. The HLA-DRB1 and -DQB1 genes were genotyped by sequence-specific PCR. RESULTS: As in type 1 diabetes mellitus, DRB1 0301_DQB1 0201 (odds ratio [OR] = 3.08, 95% CI 2.32-4.12, p = 1.2 x 10(-16)) and DRB1 0401_DQB1 0302 (OR = 2.57, 95% CI 1.80-3.73, p = 4.5 x 10(-8)) were the main susceptibility haplotypes in LADA, and DRB1 1501_DQB1 0602 was protective (OR = 0.21, 95% CI 0.13-0.34, p = 4.2 x 10(-13)). Differential susceptibility was conferred by DR4 subtypes: DRB1 0401 was predisposing (OR = 1.79, 95% CI 1.35-2.38, p = 2.7 x 10(-5)) whereas DRB1 0403 was protective (OR = 0.37, 95% CI 0.13-0.97, p = 0.033). The highest-risk genotypes were DRB1 0301/DRB1 0401 and DQB1 0201/DQB1 0302 (OR = 5.14, 95% CI 2.68-10.69, p = 1.3 x 10(-8); and OR = 6.88, 95% CI 3.54-14.68, p = 1.2 x 10(-11), respectively). These genotypes and those containing DRB1 0401 and DQB1 0302 associated with a younger age at diagnosis in LADA, whereas genotypes containing DRB1 1501 and DQB1 0602 associated with an older age at diagnosis. CONCLUSIONS/INTERPRETATION: Patterns of susceptibility at the HLA-DRB1 and HLA-DQB1 loci in LADA are similar to those reported for type 1 diabetes, supporting the hypothesis that autoimmune diabetes occurring in adults is an age-related extension of the pathophysiological process presenting as childhood-onset type 1 diabetes.