Primary SS is characterized by an increased risk of lymphoma in patients with prelymphomatous manifestations (i.e. myoepithelial sialadenitis or mixed cryoglobulinaemia). Serum B-lymphocyte stimulator (s-BLyS) levels in SS-related B-cell lymphoproliferative disorders were studied by integrating the results with the disease activity score and with molecular analyses of B-cell expansion in the salivary glands. Seventy-six primary SS patients (with or without lymphoma or prelymphomatous manifestations), 56 HCV-related cryoglobulinaemic vasculitis patients and 55 controls were studied. s-BLyS and molecular analyses of B-cell expansion in the salivary gland tissues were performed. Patients with SS and persistent parotid swelling underwent parotid biopsy. s-BLyS differed between SS subgroups, higher levels being documented in patients with lymphoma or prelymphomatous manifestations vs SS without [1.85 (0.45-4.12) ng/ml vs 1.12 (0.56-1.98) ng/ml; P <0.0001]. s-BLyS levels significantly correlated with the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) SS disease activity index (r = 0.62, P <0.0001, Spearman's test). Clonal B-cell expansion in the salivary glands, but not polyclonal B-cell expansion, was associated with higher s-BLyS levels [1.98 (0.45-4.12) ng/ml vs 1.15 (0.56-3.25) ng/ml; P = 0.013)]. Higher s-BLyS levels and tissue clonal B-cell expansion characterize SS with B-cell lymphoproliferative disorders, even at prelymphomatous stages. This subgroup of SS patients showed the highest EULAR SS disease activity index scores. This represents a biologic rationale for targeting both clonal B-cell expansion and s-BLyS overproduction in SS.
|Number of pages||6|
|Publication status||Published - Feb 2013|
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