Aim: Genome-wide association studies have revealed that single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) of human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-DQ is associated with the clearance of hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) in acute hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection. We examined the effects of SNPs on the development of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and markers of HBV in chronic HBV infection. Methods: The SNPs of HLA-DQ (rs2856718 and rs7453920) were determined in 299 patients with chronic HBV infection. Results: In 224 hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg)-negative patients, those with rs2856718 genotype AG + GG had significantly lower hepatitis B core-related antigen levels (P = 0.0184), less frequent treatment with nucleotide/nucleoside analogs (NAs) (P = 0.0433), and less frequent HCC development (P = 0.0256) than those with genotype AA. Multivariate analysis selected age (P = 0.0460), platelet count (P = 0.0481), γ-glutamyl transpeptidase (P = 0.0030), and nucleotide/nucleoside analog treatment (P = 0.0003) as factors independently associated with HCC development. HBeAg-negative patients with rs7453920 genotype GG had significantly lower HBsAg levels (P < 0.0001), a higher prevalence of HBV genotype C (P = 0.0063), and a lower prevalence of the wild-type basal core promoter region (P = 0.0045) than those with genotype AA + AG. Multivariate analysis selected age (P < 0.0001), platelet count (P = 0.0021), HBV DNA levels (P = 0.0314), wild type of precore region (P = 0.0015), and rs7453920 (P < 0.0001) as factors independently associated with HBsAg levels. Conclusion: This study revealed an association between rs2856718 and HCC development and an association between rs7453920 and HBsAg levels.
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