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Journal of Immunology Research
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 672126, 6 pages
Research Article

Antilymphocyte Antibodies in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus: Association with Disease Activity and Lymphopenia

1Department of Rheumatology and Immunology, Peking University People’s Hospital, 11 South Xizhimen Street, Beijing 100044, China
2Department of Rheumatology and Immunology, Peking University Shenzhen Hospital, 1120 Futianlianhua Road, Shenzhen 518036, China

Received 11 December 2013; Revised 30 March 2014; Accepted 31 March 2014; Published 17 April 2014

Academic Editor: Pier-Luigi Meroni

Copyright © 2014 Chun Li et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Purpose. We analyzed the prevalence, clinical correlation, and the functional significance of ALA in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). Methods. ALA IgG was detected by indirect immunofluorescence in the serum of 130 SLE patients, 75 patients with various rheumatic diseases, and 45 healthy controls (HC). Results. The sensitivity and specificity of ALA IgG in SLE were 42.3% and 96.7%, respectively. ALA was observed in 55.6% (50/90) of patients with lymphopenia, which was significantly higher than in patients with normal lymphocytes (5/40, 12.5%; ). Patients with active SLE showed higher ALA positivity (60.9%) than those with inactive disease (24.2%; = 17.925; ). ALA correlated significantly with hypocomplementemia, anti-dsDNA antibodies, and higher SLEDAI scores. The incidences of ALA in SLE patients who were seronegative for anti-dsDNA, anti-Sm, or both antibodies were 32.9% (26/79), 41.0% (43/105), and 32.4% (22/68), respectively. The ALA-positive group also had higher incidences of neuropsychiatric SLE (NPSLE) and lupus nephritis (LN). In multivariate analyses, ALA was independently associated with lymphopenia, higher SLEDAI scores, and increased risk for LN. ALA titers significantly decreased as clinical disease was ameliorated following treatment. Conclusions. ALA occurred more frequently in patients with active SLE and was independently associated with lymphopenia, disease activity, and LN.