objective: proliferative diabetic retinopathy (pdr) is characterized by a progressive visual impairment in young people. human leucocyte antigen (hla)-a24 is a well-established factor associated with the pancreatic islets of langerhans lost in this process. our aim was to study further the relationship of the hla-a24 associated with pdr. materials and methods: we evaluated a group of patients with pdr (n=95) and a healthy control group (n= 60). hla-a24 for each participant in the study was determined by molecular hybridization techniques. results: the control group showed a lower frequency of hla-a24 compared with the pdr group (p = 0.043). hla-a24 was associated with pdr (or = 5.4; 95% ci= 3.2-7.6; p< 0.001). conclusions: hla-a24 is not a protective factor for pdr, but is a risk factor of its development.