Image_1_Fatigue in Sjögren's Syndrome: A Search for Biomarkers and Treatment Targets.JPEG (251.89 kB)

Image_1_Fatigue in Sjögren's Syndrome: A Search for Biomarkers and Treatment Targets.JPEG

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posted on 26.02.2019 by Iris L. A. Bodewes, Peter J. van der Spek, Leticia G. Leon, Annemarie J. M. Wijkhuijs, Cornelia G. van Helden-Meeuwsen, Liselotte Tas, Marco W. J. Schreurs, Paul L. A. van Daele, Peter D. Katsikis, Marjan A. Versnel

Background: Primary Sjögren's syndrome (pSS) is a systemic autoimmune disease, where patients often suffer from fatigue. Biological pathways underlying fatigue are unknown. In this study aptamer-based SOMAscan technology is used to identify potential biomarkers and treatment targets for fatigue in pSS.

Methods: SOMAscan® Assay 1.3k was performed on serum samples of healthy controls (HCs) and pSS patients characterized for interferon upregulation and fatigue. Differentially expressed proteins (DEPs) between pSS patients and HC or fatigued and non-fatigued pSS patients were validated and discriminatory capacity of markers was tested using independent technology.

Results: Serum concentrations of over 1,300 proteins were compared between 63 pSS patients and 20 HCs resulting in 58 upregulated and 46 downregulated proteins. Additionally, serum concentrations of 30 interferon positive (IFNpos) and 30 interferon negative (IFNneg) pSS patients were compared resulting in 25 upregulated and 13 downregulated proteins. ELISAs were performed for several DEPs between pSS patients and HCs or IFNpos and IFNneg all showing a good correlation between protein levels measured by ELISA and relative fluorescence units (RFU) measured by the SOMAscan. Comparing 22 fatigued and 23 non-fatigued pSS patients, 16 serum proteins were differentially expressed, of which 14 were upregulated and 2 were downregulated. Top upregulated DEPs included neuroactive synaptosomal-associated protein 25 (SNAP-25), alpha-enolase (ENO1) and ubiquitin carboxyl-terminal hydrolase isozyme L1 (UCHL1). Furthermore, the proinflammatory mediator IL36a and several complement factors were upregulated in fatigued compared to non-fatigued pSS patients. ROC analysis indicated that DEPs showed good capacity to discriminate fatigued and non-fatigued pSS patients.

Conclusion: In this study we validated the use of aptamer-based proteomics and identified a novel set of proteins which were able to distinguish fatigued from non-fatigued pSS patients and identified a so-called “fatigue signature.”