Objective. Scleroderma (SSc) is an autoimmune disease of unknown etiology. The disease is 3-8 times more frequent in women than in men. The role of X chromosome inactivation (XCI) in the predisposition of women to autoinimunity has been questioned. Until now this has not been illustrated experimentally. This study was undertaken to test the hypothesis that disturbances in XCI mosaicism may be involved in the pathogenesis of the disease in female patients with SSc.