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Anticarbamylated protein antibodies can be detected in animal models of arthritis that require active involvement of the adaptive immune system
  1. Jeroen N Stoop1,
  2. Anita Fischer2,
  3. Silvia Hayer2,
  4. Martin Hegen3,
  5. Tom WJ Huizinga1,
  6. Guenter Steiner2,4,
  7. Leendert A Trouw1,
  8. René EM Toes1
  1. 1Department of Rheumatology, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, The Netherlands
  2. 2Division of Rheumatology, Department of Internal Medicine III, Medical University Vienna, Vienna, Austria
  3. 3Immunoscience Research Unit, Pfizer Worldwide Research and Development, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA
  4. 4Ludwig Boltzmann Cluster for Rheumatology, Balneology and Rehabilitation, Vienna, Austria
  1. Correspondence to Dr Jeroen Stoop, Department of Rheumatology, Postzone C1-R, Leiden University Medical Center, PO Box 9600, 2300 RC, Leiden, The Netherlands; J.N.Stoop{at}lumc.nl

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A key characteristic of rheumatoid arthritis (RA), is the occurrence of antibodies against post-translationally modified proteins. Citrullination and anti-citrullinated protein antibodies (ACPAs) have been studied extensively.1 Carbamylation is another type of post-translational modification. During carbamylation, isocyanic acid reacts with the amine group of an amino acid. This mostly results in the conversion of lysine into homocitrulline.2 A subset of patients with RA harbour anticarbamylated protein (anti-CarP) antibodies and the presence of these antibodies is predictive of worse disease progression in ACPA-negative patients.3 Anti-CarP antibodies can be present in patients with arthralgia and their presence predicts the development of RA.4

A cornerstone of biomedical research is the use of animal models to explore basic pathophysiological mechanisms. Therefore, it is important to know whether antibodies against post-translationally modified proteins are present in these models. Although ACPAs were initially reported to be present in collagen-induced arthritis (CIA),5 ,6 this topic is now debated. Little is …

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