Background Detection of IgG autoantibodies against Ro/SSA and La/SSB is regarded as one of the diagnostic criterias of Sjoegren’s syndrome (SS).
Objectives We investigated the presence of these antibodies in serum, tear and saliva of patients with SS to show whether local antibody measurements are helpful in the diagnosis of SS.
Methods Serum, tear and saliva samples of 31 SS patients (16 primary and 15 sary SS) and 16 healthy controls were studied. The levels of anti-Ro/SSA and anti-La/SSB were detected by ELISA. Lacrimal gland functions were investigated by Schirmer-I test, Rose-Bengal test and tear break-up time. Dry eye symptoms of patients were also recorded.
Results Anti-Ro/SSA and Anti-La/SSB were detected in serum of 38.5% (12/31) and 51.6% (16/31) of patients, respectively. In tear samples the positivity was 19.4%(6/31) for anti-Ro/SSA and 45.2%(14/31) for anti-La/SSB. In saliva, antiRo/SSA and anti-La/SSB were detected in 25.8%(8/31) and 41.9%(13/31) of the SS patients, respectively. Serum anti-Ro/SSA negative 2 patients had positive anti-Ro/SSA either in saliva or tear samples. Similarly,2 patients had positive anti-La/SSB in saliva and 4 had in tear samples, whilst anti-La/SSB was negative in their serum. Dry eye objective signs and symptoms were significantly impaired in patients with serum and tear anti-La/SSB positivity (p < 0.05).
Conclusion These results suggest that Ro/SSA and La/SSB antibodies could be detected in tear and saliva regardless of their presence in serum. Measurement of these antibodies in tear and saliva may be used as an adjunctive diagnostic procedure for SS patients.
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