Influence of geolocation and ethnicity on the phenotypic expression of primary Sjögren's syndrome at diagnosis in 8310 patients: a cross-sectional study from the Big Data Sjögren Project Consortium

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Abstract

Objectives

To analyse the influence of geolocation and ethnicity on the clinical presentation of primary Sjögren's syndrome (SjS) at diagnosis.

Methods

The Big Data Sjögren Project Consortium is an international, multicentre registry designed in 2014. By January 2016, 20 centres from five continents were participating. Multivariable logistic regression analyses were performed.

Results

We included 7748 women (93%) and 562 men (7%), with a mean age at diagnosis of primary SjS of 53 years. Ethnicity data were available for 7884 patients (95%): 6174 patients (78%) were white, 1066 patients (14%) were Asian, 393 patients (5%) were Hispanic, 104 patients (1%) were black/African-American and 147 patients (2%) were of other ethnicities. SjS was diagnosed a mean of 7 years earlier in black/African-American compared with white patients; the female-to-male ratio was highest in Asian patients (27:1) and lowest in black/African-American patients (7:1); the prevalence of sicca symptoms was lowest in Asian patients; a higher frequency of positive salivary biopsy was found in Hispanic and white patients. A north-south gradient was found with respect to a lower frequency of ocular involvement in northern countries for dry eyes and abnormal ocular tests in Europe (OR 0.46 and 0.44, respectively) and Asia (OR 0.18 and 0.49, respectively) compared with southern countries. Higher frequencies of antinuclear antibodies (ANAs) were reported in northern countries in America (OR=1.48) and Asia (OR=3.80) while, in Europe, northern countries had lowest frequencies of ANAs (OR=0.67) and Ro/La (OR=0.69).

Conclusions

This study provides the first evidence of a strong influence of geolocation and ethnicity on the phenotype of primary SjS at diagnosis.

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