HLA polymorphism in Moroccan Jewry

Anat Roitberg-Tambur, Adam Friedmann, Campbell S. Witt, Shlomit Eisenberg, W. Aubrey Soskolne, Lior Shapira, Michael N. Sela, Shoshana Battat, Cilly Safirman, Leontina Sherman, Isaac Cohen, Chaim Brautbar*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


The Moroccan Jewish community living in Israel shows a relatively large genetic distance from other North African Jewish communities. In this work the polymorphism of HLA class I and class II determinants, as defined by serology and oligotyping, is analyzed in 113 healthy unrelated Jews of Moroccan stock. The class I antigens HLA-A1, -B44, and -Cw7 showed the highest frequency, while the most prevalent class II variants were DRB1*0701 and *1104, DQA1*0501, and DQB1*0201 and *0301. HLA A1-B13-DR7, A2-B51-DR10, and A1-B44-DR13 were the most typical three-locus haplotypes. Although the antigen frequency distribution of the Moroccan Jews falls within the Caucasian diversity range, this community has a unique pattern in terms of antigen, gene, and haplotype frequencies. Thus, in the Moroccan Jews DRB1*1305, an allele believed to be the result of a recombination event between DRB1*1301-1302 and DRB1*1101, is represented to a much larger extent than in all the other population groups studied at the 11th IHWS. This allele may therefore be a typical Jewish variant. A particular finding was the high frequencies of HLA-B13, B52, and DR10, alleles common among some Oriental populations. The answer to this enigmatic phenomenon probably must be sought in the tortuous history of this community.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)61-67
Number of pages7
JournalHuman Immunology
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 1994

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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