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Studies investigating the association between HLA-DQB1 alleles and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) have reported conflicting results. The purpose of this study was to evaluate whether DQB1 alleles confer susceptibility to RA.A comprehensive literature search up to May 2016 was conducted to identify case-control studies on the association of HLA-DQB1 alleles with RA. Pooled ORs with 95% CIs were used to assess the strength of association.The literature indicates that HLA-DQB1 is associated with susceptibility to RA.Frequencies of HLA-DQB1 alleles and phenotype in RA patients and healthy controls.Fifteen studies with 1250 cases and 1621 controls were included in this meta-analysis. DQB1 alleles were associated with RA susceptibility. The frequencies of DQB1*06 were lower in RA (p-value for comparability=0.007, OR 0.726,95% CI 0.576 to 0.916; p=0.004, OR 0.611,95% CI 0.438 to 0.852). The frequencies of DQB1*02 were lower in RA (p=0.044, OR 0.731,95% CI 0.597 to 0.895). A higher frequency of DQB1*04 was observed in RA (p=0.023, OR 1.604,95% CI 1.067 to 2.410).This meta-analysis demonstrates that DQB1*02 and DQB1*06 may be negatively associated with RA. Conversely, DQB1*04 may confer susceptibility to RA.