Article Type

Original Study


Objective This study was undertaken to investigate the seroprevalence of parvovirus B19 DNA in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) patients and its correlation with disease activity. Background Infection with parvovirus B19 (B19) has been suggested to contribute to the pathogenesis of SLE. B19 infection may simulate both clinical and laboratory features of SLE, presenting either as a potential first-time diagnosis of SLE or as an exacerbation of previously established disease. Patients and methods Sera from 30 adult patients with SLE and from 15 normal controls were examined for parvovirus B19 infection by means of nested PCRs to detect B19 DNA. Results B19 DNA was detected in two of 15 (13.5%) controls and in 12 (40%) of 30 SLE patients, with no significantly positive rates observed in SLE patients compared with healthy controls (P > 0.05). B19 was positive in seven (58.5%) patients with severe activity compared with 8.3% without activity, 16.7% patients with mild activity, and 16.7% patients with moderate activity. No significant differences were observed between patients with virological positivity and those with virological negativity for B19 infection as regards the activity of SLE or any clinical manifestations of SLE. Conclusion Parvovirus B19 infection is not associated with SLE.