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Rheumatol Int. 2001 May;20(4):138-44.

Treatment of rheumatoid arthritis by oral administration of bovine tracheal type II collagen.

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CEPROCOR (Centro de Excelencia en Productos y Procesos de Córdoba), Argentina.


We evaluated the efficacy and safety of orally administered bovine tracheal type II collagen (CGII) in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Twenty RA patients received 0.5 mg/day of CGII for 12 weeks. Eighteen of them had improvements in the clinical parameters studied (swollen and tender joint counts, 15-m walking time, duration of morning stiffness, and physician's global assessment of disease activity). Anti-CGII antibodies were positive in 57% and rheumatoid factor (RF) in 71% of the patients with a short history of RA ( < or =2 years), whereas only 23% of those with long histories (>2 years) presented autoantibodies to CGII and 38% had positive RF. After the treatment, four patients showed reduced RF levels and all those with detectable serum tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) experienced its return to normal or levels below those at study entry. Although a placebo effect cannot be discounted, the oral administration of bovine tracheal CGII induced clinical benefits in 90% of the patients, without the side effects usually associated with treatment. This is the first study showing that feeding CGII can induce reductions in RF and TNF-alpha. The data justify further controlled studies to assess the long-term efficacy of this treatment approach.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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