Due to their pathogenetic role, many serum auto-antibodies can be detected a long time before the clinical onset and during the course of organ-specific autoimmune diseases. For these reasons, autoantibodies can be used as predictive markers of an ongoing disease (in healthy subjects) and of disease activity and severity (in ill patients). The new multiplex diagnostic technologies introduced recently in laboratory medicine allow the simultaneous detection of several different autoantibodies and can be used for screening purposes in open populations or high-risk groups. This review examines the various autoantibodies of demonstrated predictive role in organ-specific autoimmune diseases and it introduces the state-of-the-art in the detection of multiple autoantibodies with proteomic systems.
Clin Chem Lab Med 2008;46:577–87.
©2008 by Walter de Gruyter Berlin New York