Systematic autoantigen analysis identifies a distinct subtype of scleroderma with coincident cancer

George J. Xu, Ami A. Shah, Mamie Z. Li, Qikai Xu, Antony Rosen, Livia Casciola-Rosen, Stephen J. Elledge

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Scleroderma is a chronic autoimmune rheumatic disease associated with widespread tissue fibrosis and vasculopathy. Approximately two-thirds of all patients with scleroderma present with three dominant autoantibody subsets. Here, we used a pair of complementary high-throughput methods for antibody epitope discovery to examine patients with scleroderma with or without known autoantibody specificities. We identified a specificity for the minor spliceosome complex containing RNA Binding Region (RNP1, RNA recognition motif) Containing 3 (RNPC3) that is found in patients with scleroderma without known specificities and is absent in unrelated autoimmune diseases. We found strong evidence for both intra- and intermolecular epitope spreading in patients with RNA polymerase III (POLR3) and the minor spliceosome specificities. Our results demonstrate the utility of these technologies in rapidly identifying antibodies that can serve as biomarkers of disease subsets in the evolving precision medicine era.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E7526-E7534
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number47
StatePublished - Nov 22 2016


  • Autoimmunity
  • PhIP-Seq
  • Systemic sclerosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


Dive into the research topics of 'Systematic autoantigen analysis identifies a distinct subtype of scleroderma with coincident cancer'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this