Anti-citrullinated protein/peptide antibodies (ACPA) in rheumatoid arthritis: specificity and relation with rheumatoid factor

Autoimmun Rev. 2005 Sep;4(7):468-74. doi: 10.1016/j.autrev.2005.04.018.


Anti-citrullinated protein/peptide antibodies (ACPA) are highly specific and sensitive markers for rheumatoid arthritis (RA). For instance, for the anti-CCP2 assay, sensitivities ranging from 55% to 80% and specificities ranging from 90% to 98% have been reported. Despite their high specificity, recent reports have suggested that ACPA may be found in some patients with other rheumatic autoimmune diseases, including psoriatic arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus and Sjögren's syndrome. Also, the differences between the classical rheumatoid factor (RF) and ACPA, as well as the complementarity between both tests have recently been demonstrated more clearly. Indeed, both antibody systems have a different association with specific RA features like extra-articular manifestations, a different association with the HLA shared epitope and, behave differently following anti-TNF therapy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibody Specificity*
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / diagnosis
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / immunology*
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / metabolism
  • Biomarkers / metabolism
  • Citrulline / immunology*
  • Citrulline / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Peptides / immunology*
  • Peptides / metabolism
  • Peptides, Cyclic / immunology*
  • Peptides, Cyclic / metabolism
  • Rheumatoid Factor / physiology*


  • Biomarkers
  • Peptides
  • Peptides, Cyclic
  • cyclic citrullinated peptide
  • Citrulline
  • Rheumatoid Factor