High titers of autoantibodies to topoisomerase I (Scl-70) in sera from scleroderma patients

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Science  14 Feb 1986:
Vol. 231, Issue 4739, pp. 737-740
DOI: 10.1126/science.3003910


Patients with rheumatic diseases often have circulating autoantibodies to nuclear components. The clinical significance of the antibodies is controversial, although in some cases they are valuable in the diagnosis of the disease. This report presents results of a study of Scl-70, an autoantigen recognized by sera of many patients with the most severe form of progressive systemic sclerosis. It was possible to show, by three independent criteria, that Scl-70 is the abundant nuclear enzyme DNA topoisomerase I. Therefore, antibody probes of high titer and high affinity are now available for the study of this important nuclear enzyme.

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