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FRI0114 Diagnostic value of nucleosome-specific antibodies in recent active non treated sle
  1. J Goetz1,
  2. RL Humbel2,
  3. JC Monier3,
  4. J Cohen3,
  5. C Andre3,
  6. A Bacquey3,
  7. A Chevailler3,
  8. P Chretien3,
  9. A Escande3,
  10. C Johannet3,
  11. F Oskmann3,
  12. NO Olsson3,
  13. MF Taillefer3,
  14. J Sibilia4
  1. 1Immunopathology
  2. 2Immunopathology, Hospital, Luxembourg, Luxembourg
  3. 3Groupe d’Etude de l’Autoimmunité, Hospital, Strasbourg, France
  4. 4Rheumatology


Background The nucleosome is considered as a major antigen in SLE and nucleosome-specific antibodies (Ab) seem to be the most specific and the earliest markers of SLE.

Objectives To evaluate different methods of detecting anti-nucleosome Abs and determine the diagnostic value of these Abs in recently active SLE.

Methods A 2 year (1998–99) prospective multicenter study in 13 European Immunopathology Centres (Groupe d’Etude de l’Auto-Immunite).

Patients: (i) 55 cases of recently active SLE (evolution < 1 year), (ii) 50 other autoimmune diseases: 31 RA, 15 primary SJÖGREN’S syndrome, 2 scleroderma, 2 unclassified connective tissue disease.

IgG anti-nucleosome Abs were detected by ELISA or immunodot using different nucleosome preparations.

IgG anti-ds DNA Abs were detected by ELISA (calf thymus and human recombinant plasmid DNA).


  • 34/55 SLE patients had anti-nucleosome Abs reacting with 4 kits.

  • 16/55 SLE patients had anti-nucleosome Abs reacting with 1 to 3 kits.

  • 5/55 SLE patients were negative for anti-nucleosome Abs.

  • 5/50 patients with other autoimmune diseases had anti-nucleosome Abs.

Abstract FRI0114 Table 1

Conclusion 50/55 (91%) of patients with recently active SLE had anti-nucleosome Abs (by at least 1 method), 46/55 (84%) also had anti-ds DNA Abs (by ELISA). The sensitivity and the specificity of the anti-nucleosome Abs for SLE depend on the method and the nucleosome preparation.

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