BACKGROUND: There is increasing evidence that mannose-binding lectin (MBL) has a complex role in many diseases, particularly in infectious diseases. However, the relationship between MBL deficiency and cryptococcal meningitis has not been clarified. The purpose of this study was to investigate the correlation between MBL polymorphism and non-HIV cryptococcal meningitis. METHODS: A case-controlled genetic association study was conducted. Patients with cryptococcal meningitis and control subjects were genotyped for 6 alleles of MBL2 gene (H/L, Y/X, P/Q, A/D, A/B, and A/C). The distributions in allele frequency, genotypes, haplotypes, and genotype groups were compared between patients and control subjects. RESULTS: Study participants included 103 HIV-uninfected patients with cryptococcal meningitis and 208 healthy control subjects, all of Chinese Han ethnicity. The homozygous mutative genotypes (O/O) of the coding region were associated with cryptococcal meningitis (P = .023; odds ratio [OR], 4.29; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.11-19.88), the correlation more overt in immunocompetent patients (P = .005; OR, 6.65; 95% CI, 1.49-33.05). MBL-deficient participant group was associated with cryptococcal meningitis (P = .039; OR, 2.09; 95% CI, .96-4.51), particularly in immunocompetent patients (P = .028; OR, 2.51; 95% CI, .96-6.22). CONCLUSIONS: This is the first to show genotypes coding for MBL deficiency are associated with cryptococcal meningitis in nonimmunocompromised hosts.