Three of the five positive patients are common to both studies; w

Three of the five positive patients are common to both studies; we identified an additional two APS1 patients click here – one male patient and one female patient with autoantibodies against TSGA10. In contrast to the previous study, we also detected TSGA10 autoantibodies in five patients with SLE of which one had high-titre autoantibodies, and also at low titre in a single healthy blood donor. Furthermore, TSGA10 autoantibodies

were found to be present from a very young age in the majority of APS1 patients testing positive and once the patient has seroconverted, TSGA10 autoantibody titres remained fairly consistent for each patient over the duration of the disease. TSGA10 is highly expressed in the testis [21] where it is processed to form a structural protein of the fibrous sheath in mature spermatozoa [22]. No expression of TSGA10 mRNA was detected in the testes of two infertile men [21] suggesting a link between TSGA10 and infertility. Primary ovarian failure develops Cilomilast chemical structure in approximately 65% of female APS1 patients, whereas male hypogonadism is far less common, appearing in one fourth of male patients [23]. Of the five TSGA10 autoantibody-positive APS1 patients, the four male patients were not diagnosed with hypogonadism, but

the one positive female patient had primary ovarian failure. None of the remaining 34 patients with gonadal failure had detectable TSGA10 autoantibodies, suggesting that this antigen does not function as a gonadal antigen in APS1 patients. Likewise, none of the five TSGA10 autoantibody-positive SLE patients suffered from any fertility problems, further signifying TSGA10 is not functioning as a gonadal antigen in these patients. TSGA10 mRNA, while found at high levels in the testis, has also been shown to be almost ubiquitously expressed throughout the body, albeit at much lower quantities [24]. We have also confirmed these results and further shown TSGA10 mRNA to be moderately expressed in the pituitary gland and aorta, with very little expression in the adrenal

cortex. It has been previously proposed that the function of TSGA10 may not just be limited to spermatogenesis but have a more widespread role throughout the body from being expressed in actively dividing or post-mitotic cells [25]. The finding of TSGA10 mRNA being expressed in many organs helps support this hypothesis. Its antigenic target in APS1 may therefore be in any organ where expression is seen. We isolated TSGA10 from a pituitary cDNA library and showed moderate levels of mRNA expression in this organ. Therefore, we investigated TSGA10 as a potential pituitary antigen. No association however, was observed between TSGA10 autoantibody status and pituitary manifestations in APS1, with the protein being isolated from a patient with no pituitary defects and none of the other positive patients diagnosed with a pituitary deficit.

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