The identification of antinuclear antibodies specific for primary biliary cholangitis (PBC) has facilitated diagnosis in antimitochondrial antibody-negative individuals. Their presence may also have prognostic implication. In this edition of The American Journal of Gastroenterology, Reig et al. evaluate the frequency of PBC-specific antinuclear antibodies, their natural course and association with outcomes in 254 patients with PBC. Antibodies remained stable over time, and presence of antihexokinase1 and anti-sp100 was associated with shorter survival. Clinicians can request testing for PBC-specific antinuclear antibodies to minimize need for liver biopsy, but further research is needed to understand their role in disease prognostication.
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