False negative results observed in anti-thyroid peroxidase autoantibody determination by competitive radioimmunoassays using monoclonal antibodies

S. Mariotti, G. Barbesino, P. Caturegli, F. Atzeni, L. Manetti, M. Marino, L. Grasso, F. Velluzzil, A. Lovisellil, A. Pinchera, E. Martino

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Abstract

Objective: Anti-thyroid peroxidase autoantibody (anti-TPO) and anti-thyroid microsomal antibody (anti-M) are strictly related, but discrepancies are sometimes observed. The aim of this study was to assess the incidence and to identify the causes of these discrepancies. Design and antibody measurements: Anti-M by passive hemagglutination and anti-TPO by two competitive monoclonal antibody-assisted radioimmunoassays (RIA-1 and RIA-2) were measured in 10103 sera from 4232 subjects (663 male, 3569 female) screened for thyroid disease. Results: Anti-TPO and anti-M correlated quite well (r = 0.7 and p < 0.0001 by RIA-1; r = 0.74 and p < 0.0001 by RIA-2), with discrepancies mostly limited to sera with low antibody titers. After exclusion of the latter samples, anti-TPO were detected in only 79 (1.4%) out of 5317 anti-M negative sera, but were undetectable in a more consistent proportion (130/2880 = 4.5%)of sera from patients with autoimmune thyroiddiseaseandpositiveanti-M.In61 sera of the latter group, anti-TPO was measured by a non-competitive RIA (RIA-3). Forty-one (67.7%) were positive by RIA-3, suggesting the presence of anti-TPO not competing with the monoclonal antibodies of RIA-1 and RIA-2. The remaining 20 sera had undetectable anti-TPO also by RIA-3. Nineteen (95%) of these sera had positive anti-thyroglobulin (anti-Tg) autoantibody and preincubation with thyroglobulin inhibited the agglutination reaction of anti-M tests. Conclusion: Anti-TPO by competitive monoclonal antibody-assisted RIA is negative in a minority of sera of patients with autoimmune thyroid disease and positive anti-M. This could be accounted for by anti-Tg producing false positives in the anti-M assay and by a subset of anti-TPO not competing with the monoclonal antibodies in the RIA. When autoimmune thyroid disease is suspected on clinical grounds, a negative anti-TPO test with a competitive RIA should be confirmed always by a non-competitive assay.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)552-558
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Journal of Endocrinology
Volume130
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1994
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology

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    Mariotti, S., Barbesino, G., Caturegli, P., Atzeni, F., Manetti, L., Marino, M., Grasso, L., Velluzzil, F., Lovisellil, A., Pinchera, A., & Martino, E. (1994). False negative results observed in anti-thyroid peroxidase autoantibody determination by competitive radioimmunoassays using monoclonal antibodies. European Journal of Endocrinology, 130(6), 552-558. https://doi.org/10.1530/eje.0.1300552