Levels of Anti-Citrullinated Protein Antibodies and Rheumatoid Factor, Including IgA Isotypes, and Articular Manifestations in Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn's Disease

Koen M. J. Janssen, Hilde Hop, Arjan Vissink*, Gerard Dijkstra, Menke J. de Smit, Elisabeth Brouwer, Johanna Westra

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Systemic presence of arthritis autoantibodies (AAb) is specific for rheumatoid arthritis (RA). AAb initiation might be triggered by chronic mucosal inflammation, such as in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). We assessed the prevalence of anti-citrullinated protein antibodies (ACPA) and rheumatoid factor (RF) in ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn's disease (CD) patients, with regard to the prevalence of joint complaints in AAb+ versus AAb- IBD patients. RA patients and healthy subjects (HC) served as controls. Serum was collected from 226 UC, 165 CD and 86 RA patients, and 36 HCs. One-hundred-and-ten UC (48.7%) and 76 CD (46.1%) patients were seropositive for at least one autoantibody, compared to 4 (13.9%) HCs and 81 (94.2%) RA patients. Eighty-three (37%) UC and 52 (32%) CD patients were seropositive for the anti-cyclic citrullinated protein antibody (anti-CCP2) of the immunoglobulin A type (IgA anti-CCP2), compared to 1 (2.8%) HC and 64 (74%) RA patients. RF of the immunoglobulin G type (IgG RF) and IgA RF seropositivity in UC and CD patients was comparable to HCs and low compared to RA patients. Arthralgia was reported by 34 (18.7%) UC and 50 (33.1%) CD patients, but presence of arthralgia was not increased in AAb+ patients. AAbs are frequently present in IBD patients, supporting the hypothesis that inflammation of intestinal mucosa induces low systemic levels of ACPA.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8054
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number21
Publication statusPublished - Nov-2020


  • rheumatoid arthritis
  • inflammatory bowel disease
  • ulcerative colitis
  • Crohn&#8217
  • s disease
  • anti-citrullinated protein antibodies
  • arthralgia

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