Vol.30 No.4, October 01, 2023
Abstract : Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a chronic autoimmune disease characterized by diverse organ system disabilities, predominantly affecting young females. The clinical manifestations of SLE encompass various organs, including the kidney, cardiovascular system, and central nervous system. Young females with SLE experience higher mortality rates than the general population, making it imperative to gain insights into the disease patterns and associated factors. The current review examines the epidemiological studies to analyze the prevalence, incidence, and mortality trends of SLE in Korea and compares them with the findings from other countries. We aim to identify potential similarities, differences, and factors contributing to the burden of SLE in different populations by exploring the comparative epidemiological aspects. The knowledge derived from this comparison would aid in advancing the overall management of SLE in Korea.
Abstract : Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is an autoinflammatory disease that manifests with the unique feature of enthesitis. Gut microbiota, HLA-B*27, and biomechanical stress mutually influence and interact resulting in setting off a flame of inflammation. In the HLA-B*27 positive group, dysbiosis in the gut environment disrupts the barrier to exogenous bacteria or viruses. Additionally, biomechanical stress induces inflammation through enthesial resident or gut-origin immune cells. On this basis, innate and adaptive immunity can propagate inflammation and lead to chronic disease. Finally, bone homeostasis is regulated by cytokines, by which the inflamed region is substituted into new bone. Agents that block cytokines are constantly being developed to provide diverse therapeutic options for preventing the progression of inflammation. In addition, some antibodies have been shown to distinguish disease selectively, which support the involvement of autoimmune immunity in AS. In this review, we critically analyze the complexity and uniqueness of the pathogenesis with updates on the findings of immunity and provide new information about biologics and biomarkers.
Abstract : Objective: To assess the effects of biological and targeted synthetic disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) on lipid profiles in patients with moderate-to-severe rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
Methods: This retrospective single-center observational study included patients with RA taking a tumor necrosis factor-α inhibitor (TNFi), abatacept, tocilizumab, or a Janus kinase inhibitor (JAKi) for at least 6 months. Changes in lipid profile were assessed at 6 months after the start of treatment, and associations between changes in lipid profiles and clinical efficacy, concomitant medications, and comorbidities were evaluated.
Results: This study included 114 patients treated with TNFi, 81 with abatacept, 103 with tocilizumab, and 89 with JAKi. The mean percentage change (from baseline to 6 months) in total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), and non-HDL-C levels was higher in those taking tocilizumab and JAKi than in those taking TNFi and abatacept. A significant change in non-HDL-C was associated with JAKi (versus TNFi: odds ratio [OR], 3.228; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.536~6.785), tocilizumab (versus TNFi: OR, 2.203; 95% CI, 1.035~4.689), and statins (OR, 0.487; 95% CI, 0.231~1.024). However, changes in disease activity in 28 joints were not associated with a significant change in non-HDL-C.
Conclusion: Tocilizumab- and JAKi-associated increases in serum non-HDL-C levels were observed regardless of changes in disease activity. Statins are recommended for RA patients showing a significant increase in cholesterol levels after initiating biological and targeted synthetic DMARDs.
Sungsin Jo , Ph.D., Seung Hoon Lee , Ph.D., Chanhyeok Jeon , B.S., Hye-Ryeong Jo , M.S., Eunae Ko , B.S., Min Whangbo , B.S., Tae-Jong Kim , M.D., Ph.D., Ye-Soo Park , M.D., Ph.D., Tae-Hwan Kim , M.D., Ph.D.J Rheum Dis 2023; 30(4): 243-250
Abstract : Objective: Bone morphogenetic protein receptor type 2 (BMPR2) has been associated with radiographic changes in ankylosing spondylitis (AS), but further characterization of the cellular signaling pathway in osteoprogenitor (OP) is not clearly understood. The aim of this study was to investigate the expression of BMPR2 and bone morphogenetic protein 2 (BMP2)-mediated responsibility in AS.
Methods: We collected 10 healthy control (HC) and 14 AS-OPs derived from facet joints. Subsequently, we then conducted RNA sequencing with two samples per group and selected BMP-related genes. Facet joint tissues and derived primary OPs were evaluated by validation of selected RNA sequencing data, immunohistochemistry, and comparison of osteogenic differentiation potential.
Results: Based on RNA-sequencing analysis, we found that BMPR2 expression is higher in AS-OPs compared to in HC-OPs. We also validated the increased BMPR2 expression in facet joint tissues with AS and its derived OPs in messenger RNA and protein levels. Additionally, primary AS-OPs showed much greater response to osteogenic differentiation induced by BMP2 and a higher capacity for smad1/5/8-induced RUNX2 expression compared to HCs.
Conclusion: The expression of BMPR2 was found to be significantly increased in facet joint tissues of patients with AS. These findings suggest that BMPR2 may play a role in the BMP2-mediated progression of AS.
Abstract : Objective: Renal involvement in anti-neutrophil cytoplasmic antibody (ANCA)-associated vasculitis (AAV) can lead to severe renal dysfunction requiring dialysis at diagnosis. We aimed to study the clinical and pathologic characteristics of patients with AAV dependent on dialysis at presentation and the long-term renal outcomes of patients who recovered from dialysis.
Methods: This retrospective study analyzed data of patients diagnosed with AAV who were on dialysis from July 2005 to May 2021 at a single tertiary center in Korea.
Results: Thirty-four patients were included in the study (median age: 64.5 years, females: 61.8%), of which 13 discontinued and 21 continued dialysis. The proportion of normal glomeruli (p<0.001) and interstitial fibrosis (p=0.024) showed significant differences between both groups. Multivariable analysis showed that the proportion of normal glomeruli was associated with dialysis discontinuation (odds ratio=1.29, 95% confidence interval 0.99~1.68, p=0.063), although without statistical significance. Treatment modalities, including plasmapheresis, did not show significance with dialysis discontinuation. In the follow-up analysis of 13 patients who had discontinued dialysis for a median of 81 months, 12 did not require dialysis, and their glomerular filtration rate values significantly increased at follow-up time compared to when they stopped dialysis (37.5 [28.5~45.5] vs. 24.0 [18.5~30.0] mL/min/1.73 m²; p=0.008).
Conclusion: Approximately 38% of AAV patients on dialysis discontinued dialysis, and the recovered patients had improved renal function without dialysis during longer follow-up. Patients with AAV on dialysis should be given the possibility of dialysis discontinuation and renal recovery, especially those with normal glomeruli in kidney pathology.
Abstract : Objective: This study evaluated whether the hepatic steatosis index (HSI) at antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody-associated vasculitis (AAV) diagnosis could forecast poor outcomes during the disease course in AAV patients.
Methods: This study included 260 AAV patients. The equation for HSI is as follows: HSI=8×(alanine aminotransferase/aspartate aminotransferase)+body mass index+(2, diabetes mellitus)+(2, female). The cut-off of HSI was obtained using the receiver operating characteristic curve.
Results: The median age of the 260 patients was 59.5 years, and 65.0% were female. Among the continuous variables excluding the parameters composing the equation for HSI, HSI was significantly correlated with Birmingham vasculitis activity score, five-factor score, haemoglobin, blood urea nitrogen, serum creatinine, and total cholesterol. Among poor outcomes, the area under the curve of HSI for end-stage renal disease (ESRD) was significant, and the cut-off of HSI for ESRD was set at ≤30.82. AAV patients with HSI ≤30.82 exhibited a significantly higher risk of ESRD (relative risk 3.489) and a significantly lower cumulative ESRD-free survival rate than those with HSI >30.82.
Conclusion: This study is the first to demonstrate that HSI at AAV diagnosis could forecast ESRD during the disease course in AAV patients.
Abstract : Beh?et syndrome (BS) is a chronic inflammatory disease with multiorgan manifestations. However, muscular involvement in BS has rarely been reported. Herein, we report the case of a 30-year-old male with BS who had recurring pain and swelling of the lower legs. The patient was administered antibiotics on several occasions as the condition was misinterpreted to be infectious myositis. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed myofascial involvement with focal necrotic lesions, and muscle biopsy revealed acute suppurative myositis with perivascular infiltration of polymorphonuclear leukocytes. His symptoms improved after treatment with corticosteroids. Azathioprine and colchicine therapy was beneficial for preventing further relapse after short-term corticosteroid treatment. Therefore, BS should be considered in the differential diagnosis of focal suppurative myofasciitis.
Abstract : Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) is a serious post-infectious complication of COVID-19 characterized by hyperinflammation and multi-organ dysfunction including shock. Shock is also seen in a severe form of Kawasaki disease (KD) called KD shock syndrome (KDSS). Here, we present one MIS-C and one KDSS case and compare similarities and differences between them. Both MIS-C (case 1) and KDSS (case 2) showed hyperinflammation, KD-related features, gastrointestinal problems, hypotension, and coagulopathy. The extent of systemic inflammation and organ dysfunction was more severe in KDSS than in MIS-C. Case 1 was diagnosed as MIS-C because SARS-CoV-2 was confirmed, and case 2 was diagnosed as KDSS because no pathogen was identified in microbiological studies. We believe that the most important difference between MIS-C and KDSS was whether SARS-CoV-2 was identified as an infectious trigger. Organ dysfunction is a hallmark of MIS-C and KDSS, but not KD, so MIS-C shares more clinical phenotypes with KDSS than with KD. Comparison of MIS-C and KDSS will be an interesting and important topic in the field of KD-like hyperinflammatory disease research.
Ji-Hyoun Kang, M.D., Ph.D., Sung-Eun Choi, M.D., Dong-Jin Park, M.D., Ph.D., Shin-Seok Lee, M.D., Ph.D.J Rheum Dis 2022;29: 4-13
Chong Hyuk Chung, M.D.*, Gyuho Jang, M.D.*, Chang-Hoon Lee, M.D., Ph.D.J Rheum Dis 2021;28: 31-37
Hyoungyoung Kim, M.D., M.S., Yoon-Kyoung Sung, M.D., Ph.D., MPHJ Rheum Dis 2021;28: 60-67
Robert D Inman, M.D., FRCPC, FACP, FRCP EdinJ Rheum Dis 2021;28: 55-59