Anti-topoisomerase I (anti-Scl-70) antibodies in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus

Hélène A Elicha Gussin, Georghe P. Ignat, John Varga, Marius Teodorescu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

62 Scopus citations


Objective. To investigate the presence and clinical significance of anti-Scl-70 antibodies in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). Methods. Levels of antibodies against Scl-70 were determined by a commercial clinical enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) during routine evaluation. Results were verified by an additional ELISA with a characterized bovine Scl-70, by ELISA with a recombinant human topoisomerase I, by Western blot, and by double diffusion in agar gel. Disease activity was estimated retrospectively by the Systemic Lupus Activity Measure (SLAM). Results. Of 128 consecutive SLE patients, 25% were positive for anti-Scl-70 antibody; this antibody activity was cognate in nature. No SLE patient could be classified as also having systemic sclerosis. The levels of anti-Scl-70 were significantly correlated with the SLAM score for the entire cohort (r = 0.563, P < 0.001) and for 7 individual patients with multiple longitudinal measurements (r = 0.755-0.951, P < 0.001; n = 6) (r = 0.378, P < 0.05; n = 1). A significant correlation was also found between the levels of anti-Scl-70 and antidouble-stranded DNA antibodies (r = 0.558, P < 0.001). Patients with anti-Scl-70 had significantly higher risk of pulmonary hypertension (P < 0.01) and renal involvement (P < 0.001) than patients without this antibody. Conclusion. Anti-Scl-70 antibody is present in a significant subset of patients with SLE. For this subset, it offers a good correlate of disease activity and suggests increased risk for pulmonary hypertension and nephritis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)376-383
Number of pages8
JournalArthritis and rheumatism
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Rheumatology
  • Immunology
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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