OBJECTIVE: Retrospective studies have reported that subtypes of antimitochondrial antibodies (AMAs) discriminate between a benign and a progressive course in patients with primary biliary cirrhosis (PBC). Four AMA profiles (A-D) were defined: profiles A and B associated with a benign course and C and D with a progressive course. We aimed to confirm whether AMA profiles predict prognosis in a large sample of North American patients with PBC. METHODS: Stored pretreatment sera from patients with PBC from two centers were tested for AMA profiles using standard techniques. Proportions of patients in each profile group reaching the endpoints of liver transplantation or death from liver disease were compared. Kaplan-Meier curves were constructed comparing AMA profiles. RESULTS: All 472 patients studied had AMA positive, biopsy-confirmed PBC. Mean age at diagnosis was 53 yr, 90% were female, mean follow-up was 7.6 yr (range = 0.5-23), and 51% received ursodeoxycholic acid for >6 months. Profile A was not detected; 16.7% had profile B; 51.1%, profile C; and 32.2%, profile D. Duration of follow-up was comparable among the different profile groups. The proportions of patients reaching endpoints of death from liver disease or transplantation did not differ among the AMA profiles. No difference in the Kaplan-Meier curves between the different profile groups was observed (p > 0.05). CONCLUSION: AMA profiles do not predict prognosis in patients with PBC.
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