Controversy exists on the role of IgE antidrug antibodies (IgE-ADA) in infusion reactions (IR) on infliximab treatment, partly due to the lack of a positive control used for assay validation. We sought to (1) develop a robust assay to measure IgE-ADA, including a positive control, (2) determine the association between IgE-ADA and IR and (3) determine the incidence of IgE-ADA in infliximab treated patients.Methods
A recombinant human IgE anti-infliximab monoclonal antibody was developed as standard and positive control. With this antibody, we set up a novel robust assay to measure IgE-ADA. IgE-ADA was determined in three retrospective cohorts (n=159) containing IR+ (n=37) and IR− (n=39), and longitudinal sera of 83 spondyloarthritis.Results
IgE-ADA was found in 0/39 IR−, whereas 4/37 (11%) IR+ showed low levels (0.1–0.3 IU/mL, below the 0.35 IU/mL threshold associated with elevated risk of allergic symptoms). All patients who were IgE-ADA positive also had (very) high IgG-ADA levels. The incidence of IgE-ADA in patients with infliximab-treated spondyloarthritis was estimated at less than approximately 1%.Conclusions
IgE-ADA is rarely detected in infliximab-treated patients. Moreover, the absence of IgE-ADA in the majority of IR+ patients suggests that IgE-ADA is not associated with infusion reactions.