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Int J Rheum Dis. 2011 Oct;14(4):325-31. doi: 10.1111/j.1756-185X.2011.01630.x. Epub 2011 Jul 21.

Oxidative stress in systemic lupus erythematosus and rheumatoid arthritis patients: relationship to disease manifestations and activity.

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Department of Rheumatology, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.



The present work was undertaken to study the status and contribution of oxidative stress in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients. Relationship of the markers of oxidative stress to clinical manifestations, disease activity, damage and medications used were well considered.


Thirty SLE and 30 RA female patients were included in the study and clinical examination and investigations were performed and disease activity was assessed. Markers of oxidative stress, including malondialdehyde (MDA) and antioxidant scavengers with glutathione (GSH) and glutathione peroxidase (GSH Px) were assessed.


Level of MDA, GSH and GSH Px were remarkably altered in RA and SLE patients compared to controls. Markers of increased oxidative stress and impaired antioxidant capacity were profound in RA and significantly reflected disease activity in RA and SLE, with special attention to alopecia and lupus nephritis. RA patients receiving methotrexate had significantly altered parameters and the steroid dose in SLE patients correlated with these markers.


Oxidative stress was increased and more profound in RA than SLE and could well reflect disease activity, with special attention to SLE patients with alopecia and nephritis. Medications used are closely related to the oxidant/antioxidant imbalance. Considering antioxidants in novel therapeutic strategies is important in SLE and RA patients.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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