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Early and long-standing rheumatoid arthritis: distinct molecular signatures identified by gene-expression profiling in synovia.

Lequerré T, et al. Arthritis Res Ther. 2009.


INTRODUCTION: Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a heterogeneous disease and its underlying molecular mechanisms are still poorly understood. Because previous microarray studies have only focused on long-standing (LS) RA compared to osteoarthritis, we aimed to compare the molecular profiles of early and LS RA versus control synovia.

METHODS: Synovial biopsies were obtained by arthroscopy from 15 patients (4 early untreated RA, 4 treated LS RA and 7 controls, who had traumatic or mechanical lesions). Extracted mRNAs were used for large-scale gene-expression profiling. The different gene-expression combinations identified by comparison of profiles of early, LS RA and healthy synovia were linked to the biological processes involved in each situation.

RESULTS: Three combinations of 719, 116 and 52 transcripts discriminated, respectively, early from LS RA, and early or LS RA from healthy synovia. We identified several gene clusters and distinct molecular signatures specifically expressed during early or LS RA, thereby suggesting the involvement of different pathophysiological mechanisms during the course of RA.

CONCLUSIONS: Early and LS RA have distinct molecular signatures with different biological processes participating at different times during the course of the disease. These results suggest that better knowledge of the main biological processes involved at a given RA stage might help to choose the most appropriate treatment.


19563633 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]



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