1996 – Saint-Malo

The Twelfth Histocompatibility Workshop

The Twelfth Histocompatibility Workshop, organized by Dominique Charron and held in Saint-Malo and Paris in June of 1996, consisted of seven major components: anthropology; HLA and cancer; transplantation; HLA and disease; new HLA genes; allele and haplotype societies; and DNA sequencing. Although serologic, biochemical and cellular methods were also studied, the focus of the workshop was the continued development and implementation of DNA-based typing methods for the analysis of HLA specificities at the allele level. PCR/SSOP typing, developed during the 11th Workshop, was used in the allele and haplotype society format to identify and characterize several new class II alleles. DNA sequencing-based typing for class I and class II genes was also investigated in several laboratories. A modification of the sequence specific priming (SSP) typing method, termed Amplification Refractory Mutation System (ARMS) typing, was used in the anthropology component to achieve low to medium resolution typing of HLA-A, B and C genes and high resolution typing of HLA-A*02 alleles. Important data on the distribution of A*02 alleles in various human populations was derived from these studies. Use of the ARMS method was also instrumental in a more comprehensive study of HLA-C alleles than had been possible by serologic methods, providing data on HLA-B/C linkage associations and clarifying a large number of Cw “blank” antigen assignments. Although final analysis of 12th Workshop data has yet to be completed, typing results for more than 26,000 individuals had been submitted by the end of May, 1996. Of this total, the anthropology component reported data on 11,650 individuals derived from 111 different populations.

Reference: Charron, D, ed. Genetic Diversity of HLA. Functional and Medical Implications. France: EDK, 1996

Author: Eric Mickelson. Special thanks to Paul Terasaki.