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Clin Exp Med. 2006 Jun;6(2):49-52.

Autoantibodies to the ribosomal P proteins in systemic lupus erythematosus.

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Department of Medicine, Oklahoma University Health Sciences Center and Clinical Immunological Laboratory, Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, Oklahoma City, OK 73104, USA.


This paper describes the clinical significance of antibodies to the ribosomal P proteins in systemic lupus erythematosus. It appears that liver disease due to the lupus process and not attributable to viral infection, alcohol or drugs is associated with anti-ribosomal P. In addition, there is a strong relationship to central nervous system disease and nephritis of antibodies to ribosomal P proteins. The prevalence of the anti-P antibodies is strongly related to disease activity wherein disease remission is associated with disappearance of anti-P antibodies. These phenomena taken together suggest an immunopathogenic role for anti-P antibodies. This idea is strongly supported by the observation that immunoglobulin G containing antiribosomal P activity binds and penetrates living cells with profoundly inhibitory effects on protein synthesis. Finally, a new era of research has been uncovered by the observation that in 54 of 55 instances normal sera passed over a ribosome-sepharose column unmasks anti-P antibodies, which can be eluted from the ribosome column with 3.0 M magnesium chloride. This suggests that anti-idiotypes regulate the expression of anti-P antibodies in normal persons and in lupus patients this regulation is ineffective, with the development of free anti-P antibodies in a proportion of patients with active disease.

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