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Journal of Immunology Research
Volume 2015 (2015), Article ID 453046, 11 pages
Research Article

Autoimmune Conditions in 235 Hemochromatosis Probands with HFE C282Y Homozygosity and Their First-Degree Relatives

1Southern Iron Disorders Center, Birmingham, AL 35209, USA
2Department of Medicine, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL 35209, USA

Received 18 June 2015; Accepted 2 August 2015

Academic Editor: Fulvia Ceccarelli

Copyright © 2015 James C. Barton and J. Clayborn Barton. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


We performed a retrospective study of autoimmune conditions (ACs) in 235 hemochromatosis probands at diagnosis by analyzing age, sex, ACs, history of first-degree family members with ACs (FH), diabetes, heavy ethanol consumption, elevated serum ALT/AST, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, viral hepatitis, cirrhosis, iron removed to achieve iron depletion (QFe), and positivity for human leukocyte antigen (HLA) haplotypes , ; , ; , ; , ; and , . There were 138 men (58.7%). Median followup was 19.6 y. One or more of 19 ACs were diagnosed in each of 35 probands (14.9%). Prevalences of Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, rheumatoid arthritis, and ankylosing spondylitis were 8.1% (95% CI: [5.1, 12.5]), 1.7% [0.6, 4.6], and 0.0085 [0.0015, 0.0337], respectively. Eighteen probands (7.7%) had a FH. Eight probands with ACs had 9 family members with ACs. In a logistic regression, ACs were less likely in men (odds ratio (OR) 0.3 [0.1, 0.6]) and more likely in probands with a FH (OR 4.1 [1.4, 11.8]). Overall ACs risk was not significantly associated with QFe or HLA haplotypes. Estimated survival of probands with and without ACs did not differ significantly. We conclude that ACs are common in hemochromatosis probands, especially women and probands with a FH.