Tuesday, January 28, 2014

HLA subtype associated diseases mnemonics

Hi everyone!
Here's a complete guide on how to remember the HLA associations. Let's catch em all!

Doctors (DR) will turn into MD's someday.. The thought makes you go, "Aah"
Starting with 2 and ending with 5, your mnemonic for DR associations is "MD.. AAH!"
HLA DR2 - Multiple sclerosis
HLA DR3  - Diabetes mellitus type 1
HLA DR4  - Arthritis (Rheumatoid, also the one associated with Lyme's disease)
HLA DR5  - Anemia (Pernicious, causing B12 deficiency)
HLA DR5  - Hashimoto's thyroiditis

If it's not too much, you can remember "Hey! This Doctor is going to be good MS someday" to remember Hay fever, Goodpasture's syndrome and Multiple Sclerosis for HLA DR 2"

HLA DR2 mnemonic
Hi5 is another way you can remember about Hashimoto's relation to DR5.
HiPA5 will help you remember Pernicious Anemia with it too (If the A's of Arthritis and Anemia confuse you!)

I use rhymes for all the other associations, make sure you sing em with a funny tone!

"Two, three S-L-EE.
Three, four, not so sour."

HLA DR2 and HLA DR3 is associated with SLE
HLA DR3 and HLA DR4 is associated with Diabetes mellitus type 1
(not sour - sweet - sugar - diabetes lol)

You can also remember with the pokemon, "Two, three, butterfree" for the butterfly rash in SLE.. Whatever suits you.

HLA DR2 and DR3 - SLE mnemonic
"A three, FrEaking three."
HLA A3 is associated with Hemochromatosis.
(fe3+ - iron - hemochromatosis)

"Be there at eight, don't be late."
HLA B8 is associated with Grave's disease.
(late - dead - grave)

"Seven, heavenly pee."
 HLA DR7 is associated with steroid-responsive nephrotic syndrome.
(pee - kidney - nephrotic syndrome)
Seven rhymes with heaven, lee rhymes with pee, I don't know what I was even thinking when I made this!

For HLA B27, the PAIR mnemonic is famous.
Psoriasis, Ankylosing spondylitis, Inflammatory bowel disease, Reiter's syndrome.

The above mnemonics will suffice for the exam.

The below facts are not very high yield, but for the sake of completion here you go -
SCAM 3 - Sjogrens syndrome, Chronic active hepatitis, diabetes mellitus type 1 for HLA DR3.

If you extend the line in 4, it looks like an A.
A for Arthritis. Flip the A and it looks like V.
V for vulgaris, pemphigus vulgaris.
So HLA DR 4 is associated with Arthritis as well as Pemphigus vulgaris,

That's all!
Hope it helps you all < 3

IkaN, that's me xD
PAIR mnemonic from First Aid for USMLE.
The comic characters belong to Immense Immunology Insight, don't forget to check it out :)


  1. Replies
    1. thank you.very interesting.whenever i am in trouble i come to you.you always created fun out of nothin

    2. Haha I am glad I make it fun for you. Keep enjoying medical school! :)

  2. Awesome way to memorize things which I never even tried to read:)

  3. Thank you ....it is really very helpful.

  4. Thanks a lot! Maybe this has changed, but FA2016 shows that B8 is associated w. Addison and myasthenia gravis, and Graves is associated with DR3.

  5. Addisons diseasse, Myasthenia Gravis as well as Graves disease all are associated with HLA B8. Graves is also associated with DR3

  6. Addison = 7 letters; DR3 and DR4 (3+4=7)


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