Ann Rheum Dis 68:412-415 doi:10.1136/ard.2008.094813
  • Clinical and epidemiological research

Juvenile-onset systemic lupus erythematosus: different clinical and serological pattern than adult-onset systemic lupus erythematosus

  1. I E A Hoffman1,
  2. B R Lauwerys2,
  3. F De Keyser3,
  4. T W J Huizinga4,
  5. D Isenberg5,
  6. L Cebecauer6,
  7. J Dehoorne1,
  8. R Joos1,
  9. G Hendrickx7,
  10. F Houssiau2,
  11. D Elewaut1
  1. 1
    Centre for Paediatric Rheumatology, Ghent University Hospital, Ghent, Belgium
  2. 2
    Department of Rheumatology, Université Catholique de Louvain, Louvain, Belgium
  3. 3
    Department of Rheumatology, Ghent University Hospital, Ghent, Belgium
  4. 4
    Leids Universitair Medisch Centrum, Leiden, Netherlands
  5. 5
    University College London, London, UK
  6. 6
    Research Institute for Rheumatic Diseases, Piestany, Slovakia
  7. 7
    Centre for Paediatric Rheumatology, University of Brussels, Brussels, Belgium
  1. Dr D Elewaut, Ghent University Hospital, Department of Rheumatology, 185 De Pintelaan, B-9000 Ghent, Belgium; Dirk.Elewaut{at}
  • Accepted 30 September 2008
  • Published Online First 17 October 2008


Objective: To investigate differences in clinical signs and symptoms, and in antinuclear antibodies (ANA), between patients with juvenile-onset and adult-onset systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE).

Methods: Clinical and serological data of 56 patients with juvenile-onset SLE were compared with data of 194 patients with adult-onset SLE. ANA were determined by line immunoassay and by indirect immunofluorescence on Crithidia luciliae.

Results: Renal involvement, encephalopathy and haemolytic anaemia were seen, and anti-dsDNA, anti-ribosomal P and antihistone antibodies found, significantly more often in juvenile-onset SLE. Anti-dsDNA antibodies were directly associated, and anti-ribosomal P antibodies inversely associated, with renal involvement in juvenile-onset SLE. In juvenile patients with SLE and anti-dsDNA and without anti-ribosomal P antibodies the odds ratio for glomerulonephritis was 9.00; no patients with anti-ribosomal P but without anti-dsDNA had renal involvement.

Conclusion: Patients with juvenile-onset SLE more often have renal involvement and encephalopathy than patients with adult-onset SLE. Anti-ribosomal P, anti-dsDNA and antihistone antibodies are more often found in patients with juvenile-onset SLE.


  • Competing interests: None.

  • Ethics approval: Approved by the local ethics committees.