Association of the HLA-B*53:01 Allele With Drug Reaction With Eosinophilia and Systemic Symptoms (DRESS) Syndrome During Treatment of HIV Infection With Raltegravir.

Thomas M, Hopkins C, Duffy E, Lee D, Loulergue P, Ripamonti D, Ostrov DA, Phillips E
Clin Infect Dis. 2017 64 (9): 1198-1203

PMID: 28369189 · PMCID: PMC5399947 · DOI:10.1093/cid/cix096

Background - Drug reaction with eosinophilia and systemic symptoms (DRESS) syndrome is a rare, severe adverse event during treatment with raltegravir. The occurrence of DRESS syndrome during treatment with other drugs is strongly associated with particular HLA alleles.

Methods - We performed HLA testing in 3 of the 5 patients previously reported to have developed raltegravir-induced DRESS syndrome and in 1 previously unreported patient. We then used virtual modeling to visualize interactions between raltegravir and the imputed HLA molecule.

Results - Five of the 6 patients who developed raltegravir-induced DRESS syndrome were African, and 1 was Hispanic. HLA typing was performed in 4 patients, all of whom carried both the HLA-B*53 allele and the HLA-C*04 allele to which it is commonly haplotypic. No other HLA alleles were shared by all of the tested patients. Given the approximate prevalence of HLA-B*53 carriage in African (20%) and Hispanic (6%) populations, the probability of all 4 patients being HLA-B*53 carriers, and 2 of 3 African patients being homozygous for HLA-B*53:01, is approximately 0.00002.

Conclusions - These data implicate the prevalent African allele HLA-B*53:01 in the immunopathogenesis of raltegravir-induced DRESS syndrome. Although the immunopathogenic mechanisms are currently unknown, virtual modeling suggests that raltegravir may bind within the antigen binding cleft of the HLA-B*53:01 molecule, but not within the closely related HLA-B*35:01 molecule. Further studies are necessary to confirm the strength of the association between carriage of the HLA-B*53:01 allele and raltegravir-induced DRESS syndrome, and the potential utility of HLA screening before raltegravir treatment.

© The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press for the Infectious Diseases Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, e-mail:

MeSH Terms (16)

Adolescent Adult Alleles Anti-HIV Agents Drug Hypersensitivity Syndrome Female Genetic Predisposition to Disease HIV Infections HLA Antigens Humans Male Middle Aged Models, Molecular Protein Binding Protein Conformation Raltegravir Potassium

Connections (1)

This publication is referenced by other Labnodes entities: