OBJECTIVE: To analyze clinical and serological characteristics of subjects with scleroderma renal crisis (SRC) in Italian patients with systemic sclerosis (SSc).METHODS: A retrospective analysis of medical records from 9 Italian rheumatologic referral centers was carried out. All patients with SRC and an available serum sample at the time of crisis were included. Antinuclear antibodies (ANA) by indirect immunofluorescence, anti-topoisomerase (topo) I by enzyme-linked assay (ELISA), anti-RNA polymerases (RNAP) by ELISA for the subunit III, and immunoprecipitation (IP) were performed.RESULTS: Forty-six cases (38 female; 40 diffuse cutaneous SSc) were identified. Mean age at SSc and SRC onset was 52.8 years +/- 13.2 and 55.4 years +/- 11.8, respectively. ANA were present in 44 patients (96%). Anti-topo I antibodies were detected in 30 (65%), anti-RNAP I-III in 7 (15%). No differences emerged between these 2 groups for their main clinical characteristics. The proportion of patients in the anti-RNAP I-III group developing SRC early (< 18 mo) in the course of SSc was significantly higher (p = 0.03). Cumulative survival rates were 64%, 53%, and 35% at 1, 2, and 10 years of followup, respectively. Survival rates of SSc patients significantly differed according to their autoantibody profile, being lower in the anti-topo I than in the anti-RNAP I-III group (p = 0.034).CONCLUSION: SRC is a rare manifestation of SSc in Italy but it is still associated with severe prognosis. Anti-topo I reactivity was more frequent than anti-RNAP I-III in our patients with SRC and was associated with delayed onset and high mortality rates.
Serologic Profile and Mortality Rates of Scleroderma Renal Crisis in Italy / Codullo, V; Cavazzana, I; Bonino, C; Alpini, C; Cavagna, L; Cozzi, F; Del Papa, N; Franceschini, F; Guiducci, S; Morozzi, G; Ruffatti, A; Ferri, Clodoveo; Giacomelli, R; Matucci Cerinic, M; Valentini, G; Montecucco, C.. - In: THE JOURNAL OF RHEUMATOLOGY. - ISSN 0315-162X. - STAMPA. - 36:7(2009), pp. 1464-1469. [10.3899/jrheum.080806]