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Rheumatology (Oxford). 2003 Feb;42(2):235-9.

Prospective study of anti-tumour necrosis factor receptor superfamily 1B fusion protein, and case study of anti-tumour necrosis factor receptor superfamily 1A fusion protein, in tumour necrosis factor receptor associated periodic syndrome (TRAPS): clinical and laboratory findings in a series of seven patients.

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Clinical Immunology Unit, Queens Medical Centre, Nottingham NG7 2UH, UK.

Erratum in

  • Rheumatology (Oxford). 2003 May;42(5):711.



To assess the effects prospectively of tumour necrosis factor (TNF) receptor superfamily (TNFRSF) fusion proteins TNFRSF1B (etanercept) and TNFRSF1A (p55TNFr-Ig) in patients with TNF receptor associated periodic syndrome (TRAPS).


Seven patients with a clinical and genetic diagnosis of TRAPS received subcutaneous etanercept for 24 weeks. One of these patients had previously received an intravenous infusion of p55TNFr-Ig. Therapeutic response was assessed by comparing corticosteroid requirement, acute-phase response and an established scoring system over 20 weeks, both on and off etanercept.


Etanercept was well tolerated. The five corticosteroid-responsive patients required significantly less corticosteroids and demonstrated reductions in acute-phase reactants on etanercept. The two patients not requiring corticosteroids had small reductions in disease activity scores. The effect of p55TNFr-Ig in a single patient with TRAPS remains unclear.


Etanercept does not abolish inflammatory attacks but improves disease activity allowing corticosteroid reduction. Etanercept may be clinically useful in replacing or reducing steroid requirements in the treatment of TRAPS. A formal trial of etanercept to establish its role in clinical management is indicated.

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