To characterize, among European and Han Chinese populations, the genetic predictors of maculopapular exanthema (MPE), a cutaneous adverse drug reaction common to antiepileptic drugs.Methods
We conducted a case-control genome-wide association study of autosomal genotypes, including Class I and II human leukocyte antigen (HLA) alleles, in 323 cases and 1,321 drug-tolerant controls from epilepsy cohorts of northern European and Han Chinese descent. Results from each cohort were meta-analyzed.Results
We report an association between a rare variant in the complement factor H–related 4 (CFHR4) gene and phenytoin-induced MPE in Europeans (p = 4.5 × 10–11; odds ratio [95% confidence interval] 7 [3.2–16]). This variant is in complete linkage disequilibrium with a missense variant (N1050Y) in the complement factor H (CFH) gene. In addition, our results reinforce the association between HLA-A*31:01 and carbamazepine hypersensitivity. We did not identify significant genetic associations with MPE among Han Chinese patients.Conclusions
The identification of genetic predictors of MPE in CFHR4 and CFH, members of the complement factor H–related protein family, suggest a new link between regulation of the complement system alternative pathway and phenytoin-induced hypersensitivity in European-ancestral patients.