Objective: To study the expression of the chaperone family of J proteins in the synovial tissue of patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) or osteoarthritis.
Methods: Rabbit antibodies specific for a synthetic peptide (pHSJ1: EAYEVLSDKHKREIYD), representing the most conserved part of all J domains thus far identified--among them the Drosophila tumor suppressor Tid56--were used in immunohistochemical analyses of frozen sections of synovial tissue and immunoblotting of protein extracts of adherent synovial cells. IgG specific for Tid56 was also used.
Results: Both antisera predominantly and intensely stained synovial lining cells from RA patients; other cells did not stain or stained only faintly. In immunoblots, anti-pHSJ1 specifically detected several bands with molecular weights of >74 kd (type I), 57-64 kd (type II), 41-48 kd (type III), and < or =36 kd (type IV). The strongest band detected in RA adherent synovial cells was the type II band, whereas in a B cell line, a type I band was prominent.
Conclusion: Several potentially new members of the J family are described. The type II band represents the human homolog of the Drosophila Tid56 protein and is strongly expressed in RA synovial tissue.