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A Journal on Internal Medicine

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Minerva Medica 2008 February;99(1):7-14


language: English

Clinical significance of elevated antinuclear antibody test in patients with Hodgkin’s and Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma: a single center experience

Altintas A. 1, Cil T. 1, Pasa S. 1, Danis R. 2, Kilinc I. 3, Ayyildiz O. 1, Muftuoglu E. 1

1 Department of Hematology-Oncology Internal Medicine Dicle University, Diyarbakir, Turkey 2 Department of Nephrology Internal Medicine Dicle University, Diyarbakir, Turkey 3 Department of Radiology Dicle University, Diyarbakir, Turkey


Aim. There is an increased risk of lymphoma subsequent to autoimmune conditions. Autoimmune disorders may occur in the course of lymphomas. In this study, the association of autoimmunity and related autoantibodies within non-Hodgkin’s (NHL) and Hodgkin’s lymphoma (HL) patients has been investigated.
Methods. The study enrolled 119 patients affected by NHL and 60 patients affected by HL for the presence of autoantibodies and autoimmune diseases. Afterwards, the results between the two lymphoma groups have been confronted.
Results. Autoimmune diseases were diagnosed in eight (6.7%) patients with NHL and three patients with HL (5%) (P=0.651). Thirty-four (28.5%) patients with NHL and 14 (23.3%) patients with HL displayed autoantibody positivity (P=0.083). As regards HL cases, antinuclear antibodies (ANA) were detected in 12 (20%) and anti PM-Scl in two patients (3.3%). None the patients had anti Jo-1, anti Scl-70, anti Sm, anti nRNP/Sm, anti single-stranded DNA (anti-ssDNA), anti double-stranded DNA (anti-dsDNA), antihistones, antinucleosomes, anti SS-A, anti SS-B or anti CENP-B autoantibodies. In patients affected by NHL ANA was detected in 16 (13.4%), anti SS-A and anti SS-B in two (1.7%), anti CENP-B in eight (6.7%) and anti PM-Scl in eight patients (6.7%). None of the patients had anti Jo-1, anti Scl-70, anti Sm, anti nRNP/Sm, anti ssDNA, antihistones or antinucleosome antibodies. There was a statistically significant difference between patients with HL and NHL in terms of anti CENP-B positivity (P=0.040).
Conclusion. In conclusion, ANA and related autoantibodies can frequently be detected during lymphoma treatment. However, the majority of lymphoma patients with positive ANA did not display autoimmune diseases, demonstrating the lack of a strict correlation between the presence of ANA and autoimmune diseases.

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