Anti-Chromatin Antibodies (Anti-Nucleosome Abs) are felt to occur in
SLE before the appearance of Anti-Double Strand DNA Antibodies.
Chromatin appears to be a major immunogen in SLE. Modification of
chromatin during apoptosis may alter the antigen’s structure, allowing
these molecules to bypass impaired tolerance mechanisms in SLE
Impaired removal of apoptotic cells may also play a role in SLE and allow
the accumulation of auto-antigen (chromatin) which then may enable
induction of Anti-Chromatin/Nucleosome Abs.