Objective: To compare serum anti–malondialdehyde–acetaldehyde (anti-MAA) antibody levels and MAA expression in lung tissue from patients with rheumatoid arthritis–associated interstitial lung disease (RA-ILD) to those found in controls. Methods: Anti-MAA antibody (IgA, IgM, IgG) concentrations were measured in patients with RA-ILD and compared to those of RA patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and RA patients without lung disease. Associations between anti-MAA antibody with RA-ILD were assessed using multivariable logistic regression. Lung tissue from patients with RA-ILD, other ILD, or emphysema, and from controls (n = 3 per group) were stained for MAA, citrulline, macrophages (CD68), T cells (CD3), B cells (CD19/CD27), and extracellular matrix proteins (type II collagen, fibronectin, vimentin). Tissue expression and colocalization with MAA were quantified and compared. Results: Among 1,823 RA patients, 90 had prevalent RA-ILD. Serum IgA and IgM anti-MAA antibody concentrations were higher in RA-ILD than in RA with COPD or RA alone (P = 0.005). After adjustment for covariates, the highest quartiles of IgA anti-MAA antibody concentration (odds ratio 2.09 [95% confidence interval 1.11–3.90]) and IgM (odds ratio 2.23 [95% confidence interval 1.19–4.15]) were significantly associated with the presence of RA-ILD. MAA expression in RA-ILD lung tissue was greater than in tissue from all other groups (P < 0.001), and it colocalized with citrulline (r = 0.79), CD19+ B cells (r = 0.78), and extracellular matrix proteins (type II collagen [r = 0.72] and vimentin [r = 0.77]) to the greatest degree in RA-ILD. Conclusion: Serum IgA and IgM anti-MAA antibody is associated with ILD among RA patients. MAA is highly expressed in RA-ILD lung tissue, where it colocalizes with other RA autoantigens, autoreactive B cells, and extracellular matrix proteins, highlighting its potential role in the pathogenesis of RA-ILD.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy