Type 1 (insulin-dependent) diabetes
Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Summary Type 1 (insulin-dependent) diabetic patients and control subjects of Afro-Caribbean Negroid racial origin were investigated by serological HLA-DR-typing and restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis using DNA probes corresponding to the DQα, DQβ and DRβ chain genes. Combined analysis indicated that four DR antigens are positively associated with the condition in Negroid subjects — DR3, 4, 7 and w9. DR3 and 4 are also associated in Caucasians, but the relative risk for DR3 is lower in Negroid subjects. The DR7 association is specific for the Negroid race, and DRw9 is only weakly associated in Caucasoid subjects. Restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis demonstrated a DQβ restriction pattern in Negroid subjects which is absent from Caucasoid subjects. This pattern was associated with DRw9 and a subset of DR7, and was markedly increased in frequency in diabetic patients compared with control subjects (48.7% vs 10.4%, respectively; P〈10−4). In the absence of this pattern, DR7 showed no positive association. DR3 in Negroid subjects was associated with two distinct DQα-DQβ patterns, only one of which was positively associated with diabetes. A DQβ pattern, in linkage disequilibrium with different DR antigens in different races, conferred a consistent protective effect against the development of Type 1 diabetes. Trans-racial genetic analysis thus supports a primary role for DQ in susceptibility to Type 1 diabetes.
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