Disease Modifying
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2021 ◽  
Vol 13 ◽  
Francesca Malerba ◽  
Ivan Arisi ◽  
Rita Florio ◽  
Chiara Zecca ◽  
Maria Teresa Dell'Abate ◽  

The discovery of new biomarkers for Alzheimer's disease (AD) is essential for an accurate diagnosis, to conceive new strategies of treatments, and for monitoring the efficacy of potential disease-modifying therapies in clinical trials. proNGF levels in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) represent a promising diagnostic biomarker for AD, but its validation was hampered by the absence of a reliable immunoassay. In the literature, proNGF is currently measured in postmortem brain tissue by semiquantitative immunoblot. Here we describe the development and validation of a new method to measure proNGF in the CSF of living patients. This method, based on molecular size separation by capillary electrophoresis, is automated and shows a 40-fold increase in sensitivity with respect to the proNGF immunoblot, largely used in literature, and is robust, specific, and scalable to high-throughput. We have measured proNGF in the cerebrospinal fluid of 84 living patients with AD, 13 controls, and 15 subjective memory complaints (SMC) subjects. By comparing the proNGF levels in the three groups, we found a very significant difference between proNGF levels in AD samples compared with both controls and SMC subjects, while no significant difference was found between SMC and controls. Because of the development of this new immunoassay, we are ready to explore the potentiality of proNGF as a new biomarker for AD or subgroups thereof, as well as for other neurodegenerative diseases.

BMC Neurology ◽  
2021 ◽  
Vol 21 (1) ◽  
Jiwon Oh ◽  
Nathalie Arbour ◽  
Fabrizio Giuliani ◽  
Melanie Guenette ◽  
Shannon Kolind ◽  

Abstract Background Neurological disability progression occurs across the spectrum of people living with multiple sclerosis (MS). Although there are a handful of disease-modifying treatments approved for use in progressive phenotypes of MS, there are no treatments that substantially modify the course of clinical progression in MS. Characterizing the determinants of clinical progression can inform the development of novel therapeutic agents and treatment approaches that target progression in MS, which is one of the greatest unmet needs in clinical practice. Canada, having one of the world’s highest rates of MS and a publicly-funded health care system, represents an optimal country to achieve in-depth analysis of progression. Accordingly, the overarching aim of the Canadian Prospective Cohort Study to Understand Progression in MS (CanProCo) is to evaluate a wide spectrum of factors associated with the clinical onset and rate of disease progression in MS, and to describe how these factors relate to one another to influence progression. Methods CanProCo is a prospective, observational cohort study with investigators specializing in epidemiology, neuroimaging, neuroimmunology, health services research and health economics. CanProCo’s study design was approved by an international review panel, comprised of content experts and key stakeholders. One thousand individuals with radiologically-isolated syndrome, relapsing-remitting MS, and primary-progressive MS within 10–15 years of disease onset will be recruited from 5 academic MS centres in Canada. Participants will undergo detailed clinical evaluation annually over 5 years (including advanced, app-based clinical data collection). In a subset of participants within 5–10 years of disease onset (n = 500), blood, cerebrospinal fluid, and research MRIs will be collected allowing an integrated, in-depth evaluation of factors contributing to progression in MS from multiple perspectives. Factors of interest range from biological measures (e.g. single-cell RNA-sequencing), MRI-based microstructural assessment, participant characteristics (self-reported, performance-based, clinician-assessed, health-system based), and micro and macro-environmental factors. Discussion Halting the progression of MS remains a fundamental need to improve the lives of people living with MS. Achieving this requires leveraging transdisciplinary approaches to better characterize why clinical progression occurs. CanProCo is a pioneering multi-dimensional cohort study aiming to characterize these determinants to inform the development and implementation of efficacious and effective interventions.

2021 ◽  
Boyoon Choi ◽  
Hyun Jin Park ◽  
Yun-Kyoung Song ◽  
Yoon-Jeong Oh ◽  
In-Wha Kim ◽  

Abstract Background Tumor necrosis factor (TNF) inhibitors use in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) has raised safety concerns about cancer risk, but study results remain controversial. This largest nationwide study to date compared cancer risk in TNF inhibitor users to non-biologic disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drug (nbDMARD) users in Korean patients with RA. Methods Data on all the eligible patients diagnosed with RA between 2005 and 2016 were retrieved from the Korean National Health Information Database. The one-to-one matched patients consisted of the matched cohort. The risks for developing all-type and site-specific cancers were estimated using incidence and incidence rate (IR) per 1,000 person-years. Adjusted hazard ratio (HR) and 95% confidence interval (CI) were estimated using a Cox regression model. Results Of the 22,851 patients in the before matching cohort, 4,592 patients were included in the matched cohort. Treatment with TNF inhibitors was consistently associated with a lower risk of cancer than in the nbDMARD cohort (IR per 1,000 person-years, 6.5 vs. 15.6; adjusted HR, 0.379; 95% CI, 0.255–0.563). The adjusted HR (95% CI) was significantly lower in the TNF inhibitor cohort than the nbDMARD cohort for gastrointestinal cancer (0.432; 0.235–0.797), breast cancer (0.146; 0.045–0.474), and genitourinary cancer (0.220; 0.059–0.820). Conclusions The use of TNF inhibitors was associated with a lower cancer incidence in Korean patients with RA. A further study linking claims and clinical data is needed to confirm our results.

2021 ◽  
Vol 23 (1) ◽  
C. A. Lechtenboehmer ◽  
T. Burkard ◽  
S. Reichenbach ◽  
U. A. Walker ◽  
A. M. Burden ◽  

Abstract Objectives A considerable proportion of patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) also suffer from hand osteoarthritis (OA). We here assess the association between conventional synthetic (cs) and biological (b) disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) and radiographic distal interphalangeal-(DIP) OA in patients with RA. Methods Adult RA patients from a longitudinal Swiss registry of rheumatic diseases who had ≥ 2 hand radiographs were included at the first radiograph and followed until the outcome or the last radiograph. Patients were grouped into two cohorts based on whether DIP OA was present or absent at cohort entry (cohorts 1 and 2, respectively). Modified Kellgren-Lawrence scores (KLS) were obtained by evaluating DIP joints for the severity of osteophytes, joint space narrowing, subchondral sclerosis, and erosions. KLS ≥ 2 in ≥ 1 DIP joint indicated incident or existing OA, and increase of ≥ 1 in KLS in ≥ 1 DIP joint indicated progression in existing DIP OA. Time-varying Cox regression and generalized estimating equation (GEE) analyses were performed. We estimated hazard ratios (HRs) and odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CI) of DIP OA incidence (cohort 2), or progression (cohort 1), in bDMARD monotherapy, bDMARD/csDMARD combination therapy, and past or never DMARD use, when compared to csDMARD use. In post hoc analyses, we descriptively and analytically assessed the individual KLS features in cohort 1. Results Among 2234 RA patients with 5928 radiographs, 1340 patients had DIP OA at baseline (cohort 1). Radiographic progression of DIP OA was characterized by new or progressive osteophyte formation (666, 52.4%), joint space narrowing (379, 27.5%), subchondral sclerosis (238, 17.8%), or erosions (62, 4.3%). bDMARD monotherapy had an increased risk of radiographic DIP OA progression compared to csDMARD monotherapy (adjusted HR 1.34 [95% CI 1.07–1.69]). The risk was not significant in csDMARD/bDMARD combination users (HR 1.12 [95% CI 0.96–1.31]), absent in past DMARD users (HR 0.96 [95% CI 0.66–1.41]), and significantly lower among never DMARD users (HR 0.54 [95% CI 0.33–0.90]). Osteophyte progression (HR 1.74 [95% CI 1.11–2.74]) was the most significantly increased OA feature with bDMARD use compared to csDMARD use. In 894 patients without initial DIP OA (cohort 2), the risk of incident OA did not differ between the treatment groups. The results from GEE analyses corroborated all findings. Conclusions These real-world RA cohort data indicate that monotherapy with bDMARDs is associated with increased radiographic progression of existing DIP OA, but not with incident DIP OA.

2021 ◽  
Nikos Evangelou ◽  
Afagh Garjani ◽  
Sameer Patel ◽  
Dhiren Bharkhada ◽  
Waqar Rashid ◽  

Abstract This study aimed to understand changes in the risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection among all people with multiple sclerosis (MS) receiving immunomodulatory disease-modifying therapies (DMTs) in England, compared to the general population, following mass vaccination. Longitudinal data collected by the National Health Service (NHS) England on all MS DMT prescriptions and the UK Health Security Agency on all registered SARS-CoV-2 test results were analysed. The incidence rate ratio of SARS-CoV-2 infection among people with MS taking DMTs compared to the general population was calculated before (November 2020-January 2021) and after (July-August 2021) mass vaccination. Risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection among people on ocrelizumab or fingolimod compared to the general population increased following liberalisation of COVID-19 restrictions (during March-July 2021) despite mass vaccination. No changes were found with other DMTs. These findings converge with the impaired immune response to vaccines observed with ocrelizumab and fingolimod.

Nutrients ◽  
2021 ◽  
Vol 13 (11) ◽  
pp. 3804
Polina S. Goncharova ◽  
Tatiana K. Davydova ◽  
Tatiana E. Popova ◽  
Maxim A. Novitsky ◽  
Marina M. Petrova ◽  

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is an incurable chronic progressive neurodegenerative disease with the progressive degeneration of motor neurons in the motor cortex and lower motor neurons in the spinal cord and the brain stem. The etiology and pathogenesis of ALS are being actively studied, but there is still no single concept. The study of ALS risk factors can help to understand the mechanism of this disease development and, possibly, slow down the rate of its progression in patients and also reduce the risk of its development in people with a predisposition toward familial ALS. The interest of researchers and clinicians in the protective role of nutrients in the development of ALS has been increasing in recent years. However, the role of some of them is not well-understood or disputed. The objective of this review is to analyze studies on the role of nutrients as environmental factors affecting the risk of developing ALS and the rate of motor neuron degeneration progression. Methods: We searched the PubMed, Springer, Clinical keys, Google Scholar, and E-Library databases for publications using keywords and their combinations. We analyzed all the available studies published in 2010–2020. Discussion: We analyzed 39 studies, including randomized clinical trials, clinical cases, and meta-analyses, involving ALS patients and studies on animal models of ALS. This review demonstrated that the following vitamins are the most significant protectors of ALS development: vitamin B12, vitamin E > vitamin C > vitamin B1, vitamin B9 > vitamin D > vitamin B2, vitamin B6 > vitamin A, and vitamin B7. In addition, this review indicates that the role of foods with a high content of cholesterol, polyunsaturated fatty acids, urates, and purines plays a big part in ALS development. Conclusion: The inclusion of vitamins and a ketogenic diet in disease-modifying ALS therapy can reduce the progression rate of motor neuron degeneration and slow the rate of disease progression, but the approach to nutrient selection must be personalized. The roles of vitamins C, D, and B7 as ALS protectors need further study.

2021 ◽  
Vol 2 ◽  
Jodie Ackland ◽  
Alastair Watson ◽  
Tom M. A. Wilkinson ◽  
Karl J. Staples

Asthma is a heterogeneous, chronic respiratory disease affecting 300 million people and is thought to be driven by different inflammatory endotypes influenced by a myriad of genetic and environmental factors. The complexity of asthma has rendered it challenging to develop preventative and disease modifying therapies and it remains an unmet clinical need. Whilst many factors have been implicated in asthma pathogenesis and exacerbations, evidence indicates a prominent role for respiratory viruses. However, advances in culture-independent detection methods and extensive microbial profiling of the lung, have also demonstrated a role for respiratory bacteria in asthma. In particular, airway colonization by the Proteobacteria species Nontypeable Haemophilus influenzae (NTHi) and Moraxella catarrhalis (Mcat) is associated with increased risk of developing recurrent wheeze and asthma in early life, poor clinical outcomes in established adult asthma and the development of more severe inflammatory phenotypes. Furthermore, emerging evidence indicates that bacterial-viral interactions may influence exacerbation risk and disease severity, highlighting the need to consider the impact chronic airway colonization by respiratory bacteria has on influencing host responses to viral infection. In this review, we first outline the currently understood role of viral and bacterial infections in precipitating asthma exacerbations and discuss the underappreciated potential impact of bacteria-virus crosstalk in modulating host responses. We discuss the mechanisms by which early life infection may predispose to asthma development. Finally, we consider how infection and persistent airway colonization may drive different asthma phenotypes, with a view to identifying pathophysiological mechanisms that may prove tractable to new treatment modalities.

Nutrients ◽  
2021 ◽  
Vol 13 (11) ◽  
pp. 3774
Salvatore Fanara ◽  
Maria Aprile ◽  
Salvatore Iacono ◽  
Giuseppe Schirò ◽  
Alessia Bianchi ◽  

Studies on the role of nutritional factors and physical activity (PA) in the pathogenesis of multiple sclerosis (MS) go back a long time. Despite the intrinsic difficulty of studying their positive or negative role in MS, the interest of researchers on these topics increased during the last few decades, since the role of diet has been investigated with the perspective of the association with disease-modifying drugs (DMD). The association of DMD, diets, and PA might have an additive effect in modifying disease severity. Among the various diets investigated (low-carbohydrate, gluten-free, Mediterranean, low-fat, fasting-mimicking, and Western diets) only low-carbohydrate, Mediterranean, and fast-mimicking diets have shown both in animal models and in humans a positive effect on MS course and in patient-reported outcomes (PROs). However, the Mediterranean diet is easier to be maintained compared to fast-mimicking and low-carbohydrate diets, which may lead to detrimental side effects requiring careful clinical monitoring. Conversely, the Western diet, which is characterized by a high intake of highly saturated fats and carbohydrates, may lead to the activation of pro-inflammatory immune pathways and is therefore not recommended. PA showed a positive effect both in animal models as well as on disease course and PROs in humans. Training with combined exercises is considered the more effective approach.

2021 ◽  
Jun Won Park ◽  
Min Jung Kim ◽  
Hyoun-Ah Kim ◽  
Jin Hyun Kim ◽  
Eun Bong Lee ◽  

Abstract Background: Although recent guidelines recommend that tapering of biologic disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (bDMARDs) can be considered in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), there has been little evidence supporting the strategy during the non-tumor necrosis factor inhibitor treatment. This study aims to investigate the effectiveness and safety of tapering tocilizumab (TCZ) dose in patients with RA who attain low disease activity (LDA) after TCZ therapy in a nationwide cohort.Methods: Data were collected from a nationwide cohort of patients with RA receiving biologic disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs in South Korea (KOBIO-RA). This study included 350 patients who were treated with TCZ and achieved Clinical Disease Activity Index-low disease activity (CDAI)-LDA (CDAI ≤ 10) after 1 year of treatment. We performed longitudinal analysis considering clinical data measured at all 1-year intervals for the included patients using the generalized estimating equation. A total of 575 intervals were classified into two groups according to their dose quotient (DQ) of TCZ (tapering group vs. standard-dose group). The main outcome was maintaining CDAI-LDA in the following 1-year interval.Results: Tapering TCZ dose strategy was used in 282 (49.0%) intervals with a mean (SD) DQ of 66.0 (15.5) %. Loss of CDAI-LDA occurred in 91 (15.1%) intervals. Multivariable GEE showed that the tapering group was associated with more frequent failure to sustain CDAI-LDA (adjusted OR [95% CI]: 0.57 [0.33–0.99]), which subsequently led to impaired functional status. The likelihood of achieving DAS28-deep remission (DAS28-ESR<1.98) was also significantly lower in the tapering group (adjusted OR 0.68 [0.46–0.99]). CDAI remission was achieved in only 69 (12.0%) of the total intervals, with no significant difference in the proportion of intervals achieving the target between the two groups. Incidence of adverse events was comparable in both groups except for hypercholesterolemia, which was lower in the tapering group. Conclusions: Tapering TCZ dose after achieving LDA increases the risk of losing LDA without a significant merit in safety.

2021 ◽  
Vol 2 (1) ◽  
Qin Feng ◽  
Wenkai Xia ◽  
Shenglan Wang ◽  
Guoxin Dai ◽  
Weimei Jiao ◽  

AbstractSynovial hyperplasia is the main cause of chronic rheumatoid arthritis (RA), but the mechanism of synovial hyperplasia is still unclear. Etodolac (ETD) is a selective COX-2 inhibitor for relieving pain and stiffness in RA, but the disease modifying effect is still lack of evidence. Proteomics method was used to study the differential proteome of synovial tissue in collagen induced arthritis (CIA) in rats. With the help of STRING analysis, the upregulated proteins enriched in the cluster of complement and coagulation cascades and platelet degranulation were highlighted, these proteins with fibrogenic factors Lum, CIV, CXI and Tgfbi participated in the synovial inflammation, fibrosis and hyperplasia in CIA. Based on KOG function class analysis, the proteins involved in the events of the central dogma was explored. They might be hyperplasia related proteins for most of them are related to the proliferation of cancer. ETD significantly attenuated synovial inflammation, fibrosis and hyperplasia in CIA rats by downregulating these proteins. Several proteins have not been observed in RA so far, such as Tmsb4x, Pura, Nfic, Ruvbl1, Snrpd3, U2af2, Srrm2, Srsf7, Elavl1, Hnrnph1, Wars, Yars, Bzw2, Mcts1, Eif4b, Ctsh, Lamp1, Dpp7, Ptges3, Cdc37 and Septin9, they might be potentials targets for RA. Blood biochemistry tests showed the safety of 7 months use of ETD on rats. In conclusion, present study displayed a comprehensive mechanism of synovial hyperplasia in CIA rats, on this basis, the clinical value of ETD in the treatment of RA was well confirmed.

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