A study of 95 serum samples from 61 patients with ankylosing spondylitis (AS) showed that 21 patients (34%) had raised levels of IgA-alpha 1 antitrypsin complexes. These were associated with active disease as measured by a clinical index and also with erythrocyte sedimentation rate, C reactive protein, and serum IgA. In particular, an association was noted between 'extraspinal' manifestations of AS such as synovitis, uveitis, and active inflammatory properties of these complexes. It is suggested that these complexes may have a role in the pathogenesis of such clinical manifestations.
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