This article is part of the supplement: Current perspectives on the treatment of rheumatic diseases with infliximab
Autoantibodies in rheumatoid arthritis and their clinical significance
Vienna General Hospital, University of Vienna, and Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Rheumatology, Vienna, Austria
Arthritis Res 2002, 4(Suppl 2):S1-S5 doi:10.1186/ar551Published: 26 April 2002
Autoantibodies are proven useful diagnostic tools for a variety of rheumatic and non-rheumatic autoimmune disorders. However, a highly specific marker autoantibody for rheumatoid arthritis (RA) has not yet been determined. The presence of rheumatoid factors is currently used as a marker for RA. However, rheumatoid factors have modest specificity (~70%) for the disease. In recent years, several newly characterized autoantibodies have become promising candidates as diagnostic indicators for RA. Antikeratin, anticitrullinated peptides, anti-RA33, anti-Sa, and anti-p68 autoantibodies have been shown to have >90% specificity for RA. These autoantibodies are reviewed and the potential role of the autoantibodies in the pathogenesis of RA is briefly discussed.