Public Release: 

A useful tool to diagnose primary biliary cirrhosis

World Journal of Gastroenterology

Previous studies have shown that assessment of immunoglobulin subclasses in plasma cells by immunohistochemistry (IHC) may be useful in the histopathologic evaluation of autoimmune liver diseases. However, further studies are necessary in order to validate the diagnostic utility of IgM and IgG immunohistochemistry in this specific scenario.

A research team from United States evaluated the predominant plasma cell immunoglobulin subclass present in liver biopsies of patients with well-established autoimmune hepatitis (AIH), primary biliary cirrhosis (PBC), or primary sclerosing cholangitis (PSC) and assessed the diagnostic utility of IgM and IgG IHC in this setting. Their study will be published on January 28, 2010 in the World Journal of Gastroenterology.

Their research demonstrated that while the plasma cell-rich infiltrates seen in several forms of liver disease predominantly express IgG, PBC seems to be an exception, as most plasma cells in these patients express IgM. Their data indicated that a predominantly IgM+ plasma cell infiltrate, although not pathognomonic, should strongly support the diagnosis of PBC. The IgM/IgG ratio is particularly helpful distinguishing PBC from AIH.


Reference: Moreira RK, Revetta F, Koehler E, Washington MK. Diagnostic utility of IgG and IgM immunohistochemistry in autoimmune liver disease. World J Gastroenterol 2010; 16(4): 453-457

Correspondence to: Roger Klein Moreira, MD, Department of Pathology, Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons, 630 W168th Street VC14-238B, New York, NY 10032, United States.

Telephone: +1-212-3429994 Fax: +1-212-3052301

About World Journal of Gastroenterology

World Journal of Gastroenterology (WJG), a leading international journal in gastroenterology and hepatology, has established a reputation for publishing first class research on esophageal cancer, gastric cancer, liver cancer, viral hepatitis, colorectal cancer, and H pylori infection and provides a forum for both clinicians and scientists. WJG has been indexed and abstracted in Current Contents/Clinical Medicine, Science Citation Index Expanded (also known as SciSearch) and Journal Citation Reports/Science Edition, Index Medicus, MEDLINE and PubMed, Chemical Abstracts, EMBASE/Excerpta Medica, Abstracts Journals, Nature Clinical Practice Gastroenterology and Hepatology, CAB Abstracts and Global Health. ISI JCR 2008 IF: 2.081. WJG is a weekly journal published by WJG Press. The publication dates are the 7th, 14th, 21st, and 28th day of every month. WJG is supported by The National Natural Science Foundation of China, No. 30224801 and No. 30424812, and was founded with the name of China National Journal of New Gastroenterology on October 1, 1995, and renamed WJG on January 25, 1998.

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