Henry Ford Hospital Medical Journal


Seventy-three patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) nephritis were studied for up to eight years using sequential serologic and renal function tests and renal biopsies. Antinuclear antibody (ANA) patterns and titers were classified into two systems: nonparticulate and particulate. We found a close relationship between disease activity and changes in titers of the nonparticulate peripheral homogeneous system. These changes predicted imminent flare-up or immunosuppressive induced remission of nephritis. Patients with the thready ANA pattern (part of the particulate system) as the main pattern showed a predominant association with membranous glomerulopathy and better renal function than those without threads. The association of the thready pattern with relatively benign disease suggests that patients with this pattern may represent a benign subset in the spectrum of renal SLE.