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Serum anti-glycan antibody biomarkers for inflammatory bowel disease diagnosis and progression: A systematic review and meta-analysis


  • Supported in part by NIH/NIDDK R21 DK077064 and International Organization for Study of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IOIBD).



Anti-glycan antibody serologic markers may serve as a useful adjunct in the diagnosis/prognosis of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), including Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC). This meta-analysis/systemic review aimed to evaluate the diagnostic value, as well as the association of anti-glycan biomarkers with IBD susceptible gene variants, disease complications, and the need for surgery in IBD.


The diagnostic odds ratio (DOR), 95% confidence interval (CI), and sensitivity/specificity were used to compare the diagnostic value of individual and combinations of anti-glycan markers and their association with disease course (complication and/or need for surgery).


Fourteen studies were included in the systemic review and nine in the meta-analysis. Individually, anti-Saccharomyces cervisiae antibodies (ASCA) had the highest DOR for differentiating IBD from healthy (DOR 21.1; 1.8–247.3; two studies), and CD from UC (DOR 10.2; CI 7.7–13.7; seven studies). For combination of ≥2 markers, the DOR was 2.8 (CI 2.2–3.6; two studies) for CD-related surgery, higher than any individual marker, while the DOR for differentiating CD from UC was 10.2 (CI 5.6–18.5; three studies) and for complication was 2.8 (CI 2.2–3.7; two studies), similar to individual markers.


ASCA had the highest diagnostic value among individual anti-glycan markers. While anti-chitobioside carbohydrate antibody (ACCA) had the highest association with complications, ASCA and ACCA associated equally with the need for surgery. Although in most individual studies the combination of ≥2 markers had a better diagnostic value as well as higher association with complications and need for surgery, we found the combination performing slightly better than any individual marker in our meta-analysis. (Inflamm Bowel Dis 2012)

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