Anti-CRP antibodies in systemic lupus erythematosus
Joint, Bone, Spine, 10/26/2010
Meyer O – The ultrasensitive CRP concentration (US–CRP) is a cardiovascular risk factor, together with the classic risk factors identified by the Framingham studies. CRP plays a role in atheroma plaque development via its ability to attract macrophages, which convert to foam cells. Any chronic inflammatory disease associated with increased CRP production can accelerate the development of atheroma. Paradoxically, the inflammatory process in patients with SLE is associated with a fairly small elevation of serum CRP concentrations. Nevertheless, this elevation is sufficient to increase the cardiovascular risk. Anti–CRP autoantibodies, which are found in 35 to 40% of SLE patients, increase the cardiovascular risk by interacting with the monomeric (degraded) form of CRP. CRP/anti–CRP immune complexes developed in the arterial wall may promote growth of the atheroma plaque.