The prevalence of HLA-B27 in the United States: Data from the U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 2009

Arthritis & Rheumatism, 05/04/2012

Reveille JD et al. – The findings provide the first US national prevalence estimates for HLA–B27. A decline in the prevalence of HLA–B27 with age is suggested by these data but must be confirmed by additional studies.


  • The national prevalence of HLA–B27 was determined as part of the 2009 US National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), a cross–sectional survey monitoring the health and nutritional status of the US civilian, noninstitutionalized population.
  • DNA polymerase chain reaction analysis was conducted in samples from 2,320 adults ages 20–69 years from this nationally representative sample.


  • The age–adjusted US prevalence of B27 was 6.1% (95% confidence interval [95% CI] 4.6–8.2).
  • By race/ethnicity, the prevalence of B27 was 7.5% (95% CI 5.3–10.4) among non–Hispanic whites and 3.5% (95% CI 2.5–4.8) among all other US races/ethnicities combined.
  • In Mexican Americans, the prevalence was 4.6% (95% CI 3.4–6.1).
  • The prevalence of B27 could not be reliably estimated for other US racial/ethnic groups because of the low number of B27–positive individuals in those groups.
  • For adults 50–69 years of age, the prevalence of B27 was 3.6% (95% CI 2.2–5.8), which suggested a decrease in B27 with age.
  • These prevalence estimates took into account the NHANES survey design and are reviewed with respect to data from the medical literature.

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