Autoantibodies to histones and their subfractions in chronic liver diseases

Clin Immunol Immunopathol. 1989 Apr;51(1):77-82. doi: 10.1016/0090-1229(89)90207-9.


Sera of 78 patients with different chronic liver diseases were examined for the presence of anti-histone activity using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Eighteen patients had primary biliary cirrhosis (PBC), 20 had chronic active hepatitis, and 40 had cirrhosis. Anti-histone antibodies were detected in 34 patients (43.6%), distributed among all liver disease entities studied. When antibodies of specific isotypes (IgG, IgM, and IgA) were measured, even higher frequencies were noted--50% for IgG and 53.8% for IgA. Antibodies to histone subfractions H1, H2a, H2b, H3, and H4 were also observed in all liver disorders investigated (in 22-32% of patients)--H1 and H3 being the prominent fractions involved. Of the various disease entities examined PBC was the one disclosing the highest frequency of anti-histone antibodies.

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Antinuclear / immunology*
  • Autoantibodies / immunology*
  • Chronic Disease
  • Histones / classification
  • Histones / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin A / immunology
  • Immunoglobulin G / immunology
  • Immunoglobulin M / immunology
  • Liver Diseases / immunology*


  • Antibodies, Antinuclear
  • Autoantibodies
  • Histones
  • Immunoglobulin A
  • Immunoglobulin G
  • Immunoglobulin M