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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Tissue specificity and serologic reactivity of an autoantigen associated with autoimmune thyroid disease.

A recent report has identified a new autoantigen called D1 that appears to be associated with Graves' ophthalmopathy and is expressed in the thyroid and eye muscle. To better characterize the tissue specificity and disease relevance of this antigen, we evaluated the expression of D1 RNA in various human tissues using a reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction assay. These studies indicate a wide tissue distribution of the messenger RNA for this antigen, including the thyroid, eye muscle, parathyroid, spleen, skeletal muscle, and uterus. There were variations in the relative amounts of specific message for D1 in the different tissues, with the uterus, thyroid, and eye muscle having the greatest amount of product per microgram of total RNA. A maltose binding protein-D1 fusion protein was expressed in Escherichia coli, purified, and used to assess serologic reactivity to D1 by Western blot. Autoantibodies to this antigen were noted in 19 of 24 (78%) of Hashimoto's disease patients, 26 of 41 (63%) of Graves' disease patients, and in 9 of 17 (53%) of normal controls. Sixty percent of Graves' disease patients with clinical ophthalmopathy had antibodies to D1, as did 63% of Graves' patients without signs or symptoms of clinical ophthalmopathy. There was no correlation between reactivity to D1 and either clinical measures of hyperthyroidism or antibody titers to thyroid peroxidase or thyroglobulin. The presence of autoantibodies to this antigen in patients with Hashimoto's disease, in Graves' disease patients without ophthalmopathy and in normal controls indicate that serologic recognition of this antigen is not restricted to patients with ophthalmopathy. In addition, the expression of messenger RNA for this antigen in multiple types of cells questions the tissue specificity of this autoantigen.[1]


  1. Tissue specificity and serologic reactivity of an autoantigen associated with autoimmune thyroid disease. Ross, P.V., Koenig, R.J., Arscott, P., Ludgate, M., Waier, M., Nelson, C.C., Kaplan, M.M., Baker, J.R. J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab. (1993) [Pubmed]
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