Systemic sclerosis: demographic, clinical and serological features in 100 Iranian patients

Abstract: To evaluate demographic, clinical and laboratory features associated with scleroderma-specific autoantibodies. Sera of 100 patients with systemic sclerosis (SSc) were analyzed by an indirect immunofluorescence technique with HEp-2 cells as a substrate. Specific ANA such as anticentromere antibodies (ACA), anti-topoisomerase (TOPO), anti-RNA polymerase III (Pol 3), anti-U3-RNP (U3-RNP), anti-Th/To (Th/To) and anti-PM/Scl (PM/Scl) were detected by line immunoassay and anti-U1-RNP (U1-RNP) by ELISA. Frequency of clinical features associated with a specific antibody group was reported cumulatively over the follow-up period. Frequency of specific clinical features was compared across the two disease subtype including limited cutaneous (lcSSc) or diffuse cutaneous (dcSSc) as well as the auto-antibody groups. Ninety-four percent of patients were ANA positive with significant higher skin score, Raynauds and digital ulcer/gangrene. Anti-TOPO was detected in 71 % of all patients, in 90.5 % of dcSSC and in 65.8 % of lcSSc. Anti-TOPO was significantly associated with dcSSc, higher skin score, digital ulcer/gangrene, pulmonary fibrosis, DLCO\70 %. U1-RNP antibody was associated with lower fibrosis in lung. ACA was positive in 7 % of patients and exclusively in those with lcSSc. We did not find association between gender and presence of auto-antibodies. Anti-TOPO antibody had a high prevalence in contrast to low prevalence of ACA antibody. There were no differences in clinical subtypes of the disease in patients with positive anti-TOPO and positive ACA. Differences in prevalence of auto-antibodies are suggestive of further genetic study. Keywords Systemic sclerosis  Auto-antibodies  Disease subsets