Aims: Being one of the most polymorphic genetic systems , the Human Leukocyte Antigen system is divided into class I (HLA-A, HLA-B and HLA-C) and class II (HLA-DP, -DQ and -DR). This study is the first and largest of its kind to describe the distribution of HLA-DQB1 and HLA-DRB1 alleles in Lebanon and the region. Methods: Respectively, 560 and 563 Lebanese individuals referred for HLA typing and possible bone marrow/kidney donation were tested for HLA-DQB1 and HLA-DRB1 alleles using the polymerase chain reaction/sequence specific priming (PCR-SSP) method. Results: Our data were compared to that of several populations with interesting common findings between the Lebanese, Jordanian, Bahraini, Saudi, Kuwaiti, Tunisian, Korean, Japanese, Thai, Irish, Bulgarian and Polish populations. Conclusion: These data about the Lebanese population are going to aid future researchers to study the relation of HLA-DQB1 and HLA-DRB1 alleles with major and common diseases in the Lebanese population and will add to the available international literature associated with these loci. In addition it will serve as a reference for the future national bone marrow registry program in our country. We also reviewed the literature for the described association between HLA-DRB1 and -DQB1 loci and different disease entities. ?? 2012 Elsevier B.V.
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