Autoimmunity (SLS120)

10 credits

Aim of this module

This module will provide the trainee with knowledge and understanding of the mechanism of autoimmunity. They will understand the clinical presentation and investigation of a range of autoimmune disease. They will become familiar with methods and strategies to investigate autoimmunity and gain experience of the interpretation of patient results in a variety of clinical settings.

  1. Select immunology tests for the diagnosis and management of a range of autoimmune diseases.
  2. Perform clinical and laboratory investigation of a range of autoimmune diseases.
  3. Interpret and report results of investigation of autoimmune disease in the correct clinical context.
  4. Work in partnership with other clinical specialisms in the investigation of autoimmune disease.
Number Work-based learning outcome Title Knowledge
1 1

Select appropriate methods for investigation of autoimmune disorders.

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2 1,2

Perform appropriate methods for the investigation of autoimmune disorders, including all of the following:

  • autoimmune serology
  • immunofluorescence
  • Western blotting
  • nephelometry
  • iso-electric focusing
  • agglutination assays
  • Luminex, where available.
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3 3,4

Interpret immunological data in light of clinical details on patients with autoimmune disorders, including at least five of the following:

  • adrenal
  • ANA
  • ANCA-P AND C
  • Crithidia
  • endomysial
  • GBM
  • GPC
  • HEp 2 patterns, including centromere
  • ICA
  • Hu and Yo
  • LKM
  • LM
  • mitochondria
  • ovary
  • pemphigoid
  • pemphigus
  • rheumatoid factor
  • smooth muscle
  • skeletal
  • skin
  • salivary
  • thyroid
  • others.
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4 3

Interpret immunological data in light of clinical details.

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5 3,4

Identify cases requiring urgent intervention and be able to suggest what clinical advice on follow-up and/or further management could be offered.

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6 4

Identify relevant clinical investigations from other disciplines that will impact on the interpretation of the immunological investigation.

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You must complete
2 Case-based discussion(s)
2 of the following DOPS / OCEs
Assessment Title Type
Perform immunofluoresence luminex ELISA assay to determine if the patient has IgA anti endomysial autoantibodies DOPS
Read and interpret the immunofluoresence Luminex ELISA assay to determine if the patient has IgA anti endomysial autoantibodies DOPS
Perform immunofluoresence luminex ELISA assay to determine if the patient has IgA anti TTg autoantibodies DOPS
Read and interpret the immunofluoresence luminex ELISA assay to determine if the patient has IgA anti TTG autoantibodies DOPS
Perform immunofluoresence ELISA Luminex assay to determine if the patient has IgG anti ANA autoantibodies DOPS
Read and interpret the immunofluoresence ELISA Luminex assay to determine if the patient has IgG anti ANA autoantibodies DOPS
Perform immunofluoresence ELISA Luminex assay to determine if the patient has IgG anti ANCA autoantibodies DOPS
Read and interpret the immunofluoresence ELISA Luminex assay to determine if the patient has IgG anti ANCA autoantibodies DOPS
Perform immunofluoresence ELISA Luminex assay to determine if the patient has IgG autoantibodies to CDLP, and or B2gp1 DOPS
Read and interpret the immunofluoresence ELISA Luminex assay to determine if the patient has autoantibodies to CDLP and or B2GPI DOPS
Perform relevant assays to assess the presence of cryoglobulins DOPS
Perform relevant assays to assess the presence of rheumatoid factors DOPS
Perform the assay to assess the levels of immunoglobulins in patients suspected of autoimmune disease DOPS
Perform western blots to determine the presence of autoantibodies to suspected autoimmune antigens ie liver autoantigens neuronal antigens other autoantigens DOPS
Perform the relevant lab assay to assess the levels of anti thyroid eroxidase autoantibodies in patients suspected of autoimmune disease DOPS
Perform the relevant lab assay to assess the levels of autoantibodies to liver autoantigens or mitochondrial autoantigens or GPC or smooth muscle autoantigens DOPS
Perform the relevant lab assay to assess the levels of autoantibodies to associated autoantigens associated with ANCA related diseases DOPS
Perform immunofluoresence ELISA Luminex assay to determine if the patient has IgG anti ENA and or DSDNA autoantibodies DOPS
Take or observe and report back on a patient history from a patient with a suspected connective tissue disease OCE
Take or observe and report back on a history taking of a patient with a suspected autoimmune disease such as coleiac primary biliary cirrhosis liver disease thryoid disease OCE
Observe the discussion between the clinician and patient when the patient is offered immunotherapy for their autoimmune disease and as far as possible describe to the patient the nature of the tests OCE
Take a patient history where there is suspected autoimmune cytopenias in antibody deficient patients OCE
Observe the discussion between the clinician and patient when the patient is offered immunosupprssive therapry for their autoimmune disease OCE
Take or observe and report back on a patient history from a patient with a suspected dermatological autoimmune disease OCE
Take or observe and report back on a patient history from a patient with a suspected neuromuscular junction autoimmune disease OCE
Obtain a patient history from a normal volunteer or typical patient referred to your service and present the findings to a colleague or peer OCE

Important information

The academic parts of this module will be detailed and communicated to you by your university. Please contact them if you have questions regarding this module and its assessments. The module titles in your MSc may not be exactly identical to the work-based modules shown in the e-portfolio. Your modules will be aligned, however, to ensure that your academic and work-based learning are complimentary.

Learning Outcomes

  1. Explain the causes of autoimmune disease.
  2. Discuss and justify the strategies and methods to distinguish autoimmunity from autoimmune disease.
  3. Explain the role of autoantibodies and autoimmune disease.
  4. Explain the role of autoreactive T cells and autoimmune disease.
  5. Discuss and justify the investigation and management of autoimmune disease.
  6. Describe the design, operation and performance of laboratory techniques for the investigation of autoimmune disease.
  7. Describe the partnership between clinical immunology and other clinical specialism in the investigation of autoimmune disease and patient care.

Indicative Content

  • Spectrum and overlap of autoimmune diseases (multifactorial; genetic factors; hormonal factors; environmental factors)
  • Autoreactivity
    • Countering immune regulatory mechanisms
    • Pathogenic effects (autoantibodies; autoreactive cells; immune complexes)
    • Diagnostic tests
  • Vasculitis
  • Rheumatic and connective tissue diseases
  • Endocrine autoimmune diseases
  • Liver diseases
  • Gastrointestinal diseases
  • Renal diseases
  • Skin diseases
  • Neurological diseases