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Autoimmune thyroid diseases (AITDs), including Graves' disease (GD) and Hashimoto's thyroiditis (HT), are among the commonest autoimmune disorders, affecting approximately 2% -5% of the population. Epidemiological data support strong genetic influences on the development of AITD. The identification of genes placing individuals at an increased risk for the development of AITD has been a slow process. However, over the last 20 years or so real progress has been made with the mapping of noveldoi:10.4236/ojemd.2012.24017 fatcat:sssv5jpilnbavjrxjuqbktdg4i