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The diagnostic and analytical performance of the coupled-particle light-scattering assay in detecting anti-Ro/SSA autoantibodies (the 60-kDa [Ro60] and the 52-kDa [Ro52] antibodies) and anti-La/SSB autoantibodies was evaluated. The antigens were obtained by recombinant DNA procedures to include the most immunogenic epitopes for each protein by using a prokaryotic expression system. Serum samples from 151 patients with connective tissue diseases and 52 control subjects (including patients with viral infections, patients with
Lyme disease, and healthy subjects) were studied. Sensitivities for detection of anti-Ro/SSA and anti-La/SSB were 88.2 and 95.2%, respectively; specificities were 97.6 and 98.1%, respectively. The intra-assay coefficient of variation (CV) ranged from 4.3 to 10.9% for anti-Ro/SSA and from 2.8 to 12.5% for anti-La/SSB; interassay CVs ranged from 6.5 to 13.2% and from 8.2 to 14.5%, respectively. Among the anti-Ro/SSA-positive samples, Ro60 was recognized by 66% of the test sera and Ro52 was recognized by 95% of the test sera. Thirty-four percent of the Ro/SSA-positive sera were reactive only with the Ro52 antigen, indicating that anti-Ro52 is the most common antibody specificity recognized by anti-Ro/SSA autoantibodies. No differences were found between the prevalences of anti-Ro60 and anti-Ro52 in relation to systemic lupus erythematosus or Sjögren’s syndrome. The results of the present study indicate that this new immunoassay is an efficient diagnostic tool for the detection of anti-Ro/SSA and anti-La/SSB antibodies in patients with autoimmune disorders.