Clinical Rheumatology

, 27:1417

High-titer antichromatin antibody is associated with proliferative class IV of lupus nephritis

  • J. F. Carvalho
  • V. S. T. Viana
  • E. F. Borba
  • A. P. do Nascimento
  • E. P. Leon
  • L. A. Testagrossa
  • R. T. Barros
  • E. Bonfá
Original Article


The antichromatin antibody (aCT) has been described as a useful marker for lupus nephropathy. The relevance of its nephritogenic potential may be appropriately evaluated in the context of renal histopathology. Therefore, the present study investigated the relationship of aCT with a particular histopathologic class of lupus nephritis (LN). Seventy-eight consecutive patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (ACR criteria) and active nephritis who underwent renal biopsy from 1999 to 2004 and with available frozen serum sample obtained at the time of biopsy were selected. aCT was measured by ELISA, and anti-dsDNA was measured by indirect immunofluorescence (IIF) and by ELISA. All renal biopsies were revised in a blinded manner by the same expert renal pathologist. Charts were extensively reviewed for demographic and renal features obtained at the time of biopsy. The prevalence of aCT (≥20 U) was 59% with a mean titer of 74.3 ± 38.7U. Both aCT-positive and aCT-negative groups of patients had similar age, gender distribution, duration of lupus, and duration of renal disease. Anti-dsDNA was detected by IIF in 29.5% and by ELISA in 42.3% of the patients. Concomitant presence of both antibodies was observed in 63% (29/46) [anti-dsDNA by ELISA] and 45.6% (21/46) [anti-dsDNA by IIF] of the patients. Lower serum levels of C3 (73% vs. 40%, P= 0.0058) and C4 (82% vs. 46.7%, P= 0.0021) were more commonly observed in aCT ≥ 20 U patients compared to the aCT-negative group. It is important to note that the use of a higher cut-off value (≥40 U) for aCT test revealed a predominance of class IV LN (58% vs. 33%, P= 0.039) in aCT ≥ 40 U compared to aCT < 40 U group. The mean levels of proteinuria, serum albumin, and creatinine were markedly altered but were comparable in both groups (P ≥ 0.05). One fourth (26.3%) of the 19 patients with class IV LN and aCT ≥ 40 U had no detectable anti-dsDNA (ELISA). These data suggest that high-titer aCT seems to be a valuable biomarker for proliferative class IV of LN.


Antichromatin antibody Anti-dsDNA Antinucleosome antibody Autoantibody Lupus nephritis Systemic lupus erythematosus 


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Copyright information

© Clinical Rheumatology 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. F. Carvalho
    • 1
  • V. S. T. Viana
    • 1
  • E. F. Borba
    • 1
  • A. P. do Nascimento
    • 1
  • E. P. Leon
    • 1
  • L. A. Testagrossa
    • 2
  • R. T. Barros
    • 3
  • E. Bonfá
    • 1
  1. 1.Disciplina de ReumatologiaFaculdade de Medicina da Universidade de São PauloSão PauloBrazil
  2. 2.Pathology DepartmentFaculdade de Medicina da Universidade de São PauloSão PauloBrazil
  3. 3.Nephrology DivisionFaculdade de Medicina da Universidade de São PauloSão PauloBrazil

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