Background: We conducted a case-control study to examine the relationship between human leukocyte antigen-A (HLA-A) allele polymorphism and the pathogenesis of cervical neoplasia among Japanese women. Methods: A total of 119 patients with invasive cervical squamous cell carcinoma were compared to 119 age- and menopausal status-matched non-cancer controls. Blood samples were taken from all cases and controls and lifestyle information was collected by means of a self-administered questionnaire. The estimated impact of HLA-A alleles on cervical cancer risk was evaluated by unconditional logistic regression models. Results: The frequency of HLA-A*0206 among cases was significantly lower than among controls (P = 0.006). There was an inverse association between A*0206 and cervical cancer risk (odds ratio [OR] = 0.31, 95% confidence interval [95% CI] = 0.15 to 0.65, P = 0.002), and a positive association for HLA-A*2402 (OR = 1.76, 95% CI = 1.00 to 3.09, P = 0.048). After correction for multiple comparisons, A*0206 was significantly associated with reduced cervical cancer risk (corrected P = 0.036). Furthermore, the inverse association between A*0206 and cervical cancer risk was independent of smoking status (never smoker: OR = 0.37, 95% CI = 0.15 to 0.90; ever smoker: OR = 0.23, 95% CI = 0.06 to 0.89). Conclusions: There was an inverse association between HLA-A*0206 and cervical cancer risk among Japanese women, which suggests that HLA-A polymorphism influences cervical cancer risk. Further investigation in other populations is thus warranted.
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