Antinuclear Antibodies in Systemic Sclerosis: an Update

Clinical Reviews in Allergy & Immunology
Anna StochmalLidia Rudnicka


Systemic sclerosis is an autoimmune disease characterized by fibrosis of skin and internal organs, vasculopathy, and dysregulation of immune system. A diagnostically important feature of immunological abnormalities in systemic sclerosis is the presence of circulating antinuclear antibodies, which may be detected in 90-95% of patients with either of the four main laboratory methods: immunofluorescence, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, immunodiffusion, and immunoblotting. There are several antinuclear antibodies specific for systemic sclerosis. These include antibodies against topoisomerase (anti-TOPO I), kinetochore proteins (ACA), RNA polymerase enzyme (anti-RNAP III), ribonuclear proteins (anti-U11/U12 RNP, anti-U1 RNP, anti-U3 RNP) and nucleolar antigens (anti-Th/To, anti-NOR 90, anti-Ku, antiRuvBL1/2, and anti-PM/Scl). Autoantibodies specific for systemic sclerosis have been linked to distinct clinical features. Therefore, detecting a particular antibody type is important in predicting a possible organ involvement and prognosis and may have an impact on monitoring and treatment.


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Related Concepts

Fluorescent Antinuclear Antibodies
Differential Diagnosis
Disease Susceptibility
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Biochemical Marker
Autoimmune Response
Statistical Prevalence

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