Saliva Free Light Chains in Patients with Neuro-Sjögren
Background: Sjögren’s syndrome (SS) is an autoimmune disease characterized by sicca symptoms and various extra-glandular manifestations. The diagnosis of SS requires sicca symptoms, anti-SSA(Ro)-antibody positivity, and/or pathological focus scores on a minor salivary gland biopsy. Previous studies have investigated different biomarkers in order to avoid invasive diagnostic procedures. It was found that kappa and lambda free light chains (KFLC and LFLC) in saliva are specific for SS. Methods: FLC concentrations in saliva and serum were determined in 130 patients—50 with SS and neurological involvement (Neuro-Sjögren) and 80 neurological controls. The EULAR SS disease activity index and patient reported index (ESSPRI) were determined in patients with SS. Results: Patients with SS revealed increased pain and decreased saliva production according to the ESSPRI and Saxon test, respectively, with increasing FLC concentrations in the saliva. No significant differences in serum and salivary protein concentrations were observed between patients with SS and controls. Conclusion: KFLC and LFLC concentrations in saliva are not suitable to distinguish patients with Neuro-Sjögren and neurological control subjects, thus a diagnostic biopsy is still required. The association of salivary KFLC and LFLC concentrations with saliva production and ESSPRI pain score suggests a complex relationship between dryness and pain in patients with SS.