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Bullous pemphigoid antigen II (BP180) and its soluble extracellular domains are major autoantigens in mucous membrane pemphigoid: the pathogenic relevance to HLA class II alleles and disease severity

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

N Oyama, J F Setterfield, A M Powell, Y Sakuma-Oyama, S Albert, B S Bhogal, R W Vaughan, F Kaneko, S J Challacombe, M M Black

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)90 - 98
Number of pages9
JournalBritish Journal of Dermatology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2006

King's Authors


Background Mucous membrane pemphigoid (MMP), a chronic autoimmune subepithelial blistering disease, is associated with circulating IgG and/or IgA autoantibodies against several basement membrane zone antigens. The heterogeneity of clinical presentation and diversity of target autoantigens have contributed to difficulties in characterizing this condition immunologically. Objectives To analyse serum autoantibody profile and HLA class II alleles in MMP patients and to correlate this with the clinical presentation of disease. Methods Well-defined subgroups consisting of 124 patients with MMP were examined for IgG and IgA reactivity with immunoblotting using human epidermal, dermal and placental amnion proteins. The results were further analysed on the basis of detailed clinical (sites of involvement and disease severity) and immunopathological criteria (immunofluorescence study and HLA class II alleles). Results Immunoblot assay revealed that the majority of MMP patients had IgG (93 of 124, 75%) and/or IgA autoantibodies (63 of 124, 51%) to BP180 (including its soluble ectodomains, 120-kDa LAD-1 and 97-kDa LABD97 antigens). Other antigens targeted predominantly by IgG autoantibodies included: BP230 in 34 (27%), beta(4) integrin in 26 (21%), and laminin 5 in three (2%). All the BP230+ sera and 23 (88%) beta(4) integrin+ sera also reacted with at least one of the BP180 antigens. Over 85% of patients with reactivity to beta(4) integrin had ocular involvement. In most cases of MMP, more severe clinical features were associated with antibody reactivity to multiple basement membrane zone antigens, as well as reactivity to multiple BP180 component antigens. Dual BP180/LAD-1 reactivity with IgG and IgA was associated with a more severe phenotype. In addition, the subset-dependent autoantibody reactivity correlated well with specific HLA class II alleles, DQB1*0301, DRB1*04 and DRB1*11. Conclusions Our results confirmed that BP180 is a major autoantigen targeted by the sera of patients with MMP. The disease-prevalent HLA class II alleles and humoral autoimmune response against the particular subsets of antigenic epitope(s) within BP180 ectodomain may contribute to the clinicopathological significance and disease severity of MMP

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