The etiology of AIP is still unknown but there is strong circumstantial evidence suggesting that this may be an autoimmune condition. There is evidence suggesting the HLA DRB1*0405-DQB1*0401 may be associated with AIP observed in Japan when compared with normal and with chronic pancreatitis controls. Numerous autoantibodies, including ones against carbonic anhydrase, antinuclear antibody, rheumatoid factor and lactoferrin, have also been described in conjunction with AIP.[4,5,35,36,37] However, none of these autoantibodies have been show to be exclusive to AIP. In 1990, Hamano et al. showed that there was an association between serum IgG4 levels and AIP. The fact that AIP responds rapidly to steroids suggests an autoimmune etiology. The various theories of the pathogenesis of AIP are beyond the scope of this article and have recently been discussed in other reviews.[28,35,38]
Expert Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2009;3(2):197-204. © 2009 Expert Reviews, Ltd.
Cite this: Autoimmune Pancreatitis: An Update - Medscape - Apr 01, 2009.