Digestive Diseases and Sciences

, Volume 55, Issue 8, pp 2144-2161

First online:

Autoantibodies as Prognostic Markers in Autoimmune Liver Disease

  • Albert J. CzajaAffiliated withDivision of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine Email author 

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Certain autoantibodies in autoimmune liver disease have prognostic implications that are under-utilized and under-developed. The goals of this review are to indicate progress in characterizing the autoantibodies with prognostic connotations and to indicate the feasibility and importance of discovering other markers. Prime source and review articles in English were selected by a Medline search through 2010. Antibodies to soluble liver antigen, actin, liver cytosol type 1, asialoglycoprotein receptor, chromatin, cyclic citrullinated peptide, and uridine glucuronosyltransferases have been associated with the occurrence, severity, and progression of autoimmune hepatitis, and antibodies to Sp100, gp210, and centromere have had similar implications in primary biliary cirrhosis. Antibodies to soluble liver antigen have shown the most promise in autoimmune hepatitis as they have been associated with severe histological changes, long durations of treatment, relapse after drug withdrawal, and high frequency of liver failure. Antibodies to the nuclear rim pore protein, gp210, have shown the most promise in primary biliary cirrhosis as they have been associated with severe interface hepatitis, lobular inflammation, and progression to liver failure. The major limitations of the autoantibodies have been their lack of standardized assays, low negative predictabilities, and fluctuating levels. Performance parameters will improve as critical pathogenic pathways, comprehensive testing batteries, and standardized assays through international exchange workshops are developed. Progress has been made in identifying the serological markers of prognosis in autoimmune liver disease, and they promise to reflect critical disease mechanisms and enhance patient management.


Autoantibodies Autoimmune hepatitis Primary biliary cirrhosis