343 research outputs found

    Role of subclinical gut inflammation in the pathogenesis of spondyloarthritis

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    Subclinical gut inflammation occurring in patients affected by spondyloarthritis (SpA) is correlated with the severity of spine inflammation. Several evidences indicate that dysbiosis occurs in SpA, and that may modulate intestinal permeability and intestinal immune responses. The presence of intestinal dysbiosis is accompanied in SpA patients with the presence of zonulin-dependent alterations of gut-epithelial and gut-vascular barriers. The leakage of epithelial and endothelial surface layers is followed by the translocation of bacterial products, such as lipopolysaccharide and intestinal fatty acid binding protein, in the systemic circulation. These bacterial products may downregulate the expression of CD14 on circulating monocytes leading to an "anergic" phenotype. In the gut, IL-23 may induce the expansion of innate immune cells such as mucosal-associated invariant T cells, γδ T cells, and innate lymphoid cells of group 3 that through the interaction with MAdCAM1 may recirculate form the gut to the sites of SpA active inflammation. On the basis of these findings, gut inflammation observed in SpA patient seems to be not only an epiphenomenon of the on going systemic inflammatory process but may also represent the base camp in which inflammatory cells are activated and from whom they shuttle

    Pathogenesis of polymyalgia rheumatica

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    Polymyalgia rheumatica (PMR) is a chronic, inflammatory disorder of unknown cause, almost exclusively occurring in people aged over 50 and often associated with giant cell arteritis. The evidence that PMR occurs almost exclusively in individuals aged over 50 may indicate that age-related immune alterations in genetically predisposed subjects contribute to development of the disease. Several infectious agents have been investigated as possible triggers of PMR even though the results are inconclusive. Activation of the innate and adaptive immune systems has been proved in PMR patients as demonstrated by the activation of dendritic cells and monocytes/macrophages and the altered balance between Th17 and Treg cells. Disturbed B cell distribution and function have been also demonstrated in PMR patients suggesting a pathogenesis more complex than previously imagined. In this review we will discuss the recent findings regarding the pathogenesis of PMR

    Histopathology of the gut in rheumatic diseases

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    The gastrointestinal tract regulates the trafficking of macromolecules between the environment and the host through an epithelial barrier mechanism and is an important part of the immune system controlling the equilibrium between tolerance and immunity to non-self-antigens. Various evidence indicates that intestinal inflammation occurs in patients with rheumatic diseases. In many rheumatic diseases intestinal inflammation appears to be linked to dysbiosis and possibly represents the common denominator in the pathogenesis of different rheumatic diseases. The continuative interaction between dysbiosis and the intestinal immune system may lead to the aberrant activation of immune cells that can re-circulate from the gut to the sites of extraintestinal inflammation as observed in patients with ankylosing spondylitis. The exact contribution of genetic factors in the development of intestinal inflammation in rheumatic diseases needs to be clarified

    Invariant NKT cells and rheumatic disease: Focus on primary sjogren syndrome

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    Primary Sjogren syndrome (pSS) is a complex autoimmune disease mainly affecting salivary and lacrimal glands. Several factors contribute to pSS pathogenesis; in particular, innate immunity seems to play a key role in disease etiology. Invariant natural killer (NK) T cells (iNKT) are a T-cell subset able to recognize glycolipid antigens. Their function remains unclear, but studies have pointed out their ability to modulate the immune system through the promotion of specific cytokine milieu. In this review, we discussed the possible role of iNKT in pSS development, as well as their implications as future markers of disease activity

    Managing Adult-onset Still's disease: The effectiveness of high-dosage of corticosteroids as first-line treatment in inducing the clinical remission. Results from an observational study

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    To assess the effectiveness of the treatment with high dosage of corticosteroids (CCSs), as first-line therapy, in inducing remission in naïve Adult-onset Still's disease (AOSD) patients compared with low dosage of CCSs, after 6 months. To further evaluate the rate of patients maintaining the remission and the rate of CCSs discontinuation, after additional 12 months of follow-up.A retrospective evaluation of patients prospectively followed was designed to compare the rate of clinical remission in naïve AOSD patients treated with high dosages of CCSs (0.8-1 mg/kg/day of prednisone-equivalent) or low dosage of CCSs (0.2-0.3 mg/kg/day of prednisone-equivalent), after 6 months. An additional analysis was performed to compare the rate of monocyclic pattern between these groups, after further 12 months of follow-up.The clinical remission was achieved in a higher percentage of patients treated with the first-line treatment with high dosage of CCSs than treated the first-line treatment with low dosage of CCSs. At the end of 18 months of follow-up, a larger percentage of patients treated the first-line treatment with high dosage of CCSs was classified as monocyclic pattern and discontinued CCSs when compared with patients treated the first-line treatment with low dosage of CCSs. Patients defined as CCSs non-responder were treated with methotrexate (MTX)+CCSs or with combination therapy CCSs+MTX+biologic drug. The clinical remission was observed in a percentage of these patients.We showed the effectiveness of the first-line treatment with high dosage of CCSs in inducing clinical remission in naïve AOSD patients when compared with the first-line treatment with low dosage of CCSs. The first-line treatment with high dosage of CCSs was also associated with the achievement of monocyclic pattern and CCSs discontinuation, after 18 months of follow-up

    Primary sjogren syndrome: Focus on innate immune cells and inflammation

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    Primary Sjogren Syndrome (pSS) is a complex, multifactorial rheumatic disease that mainly targets salivary and lacrimal glands, inducing epithelitis. The cause behind the autoimmunity outbreak in pSS is still elusive; however, it seems related to an aberrant reaction to exogenous triggers such as viruses, combined with individual genetic pre-disposition. For a long time, autoantibodies were considered as the hallmarks of this disease; however, more recently the complex interplay between innate and adaptive immunity as well as the consequent inflammatory process have emerged as the main mechanisms of pSS pathogenesis. The present review will focus on innate cells and on the principal mechanisms of inflammation connected. In the first part, an overview of innate cells involved in pSS pathogenesis is provided, stressing in particular the role of Innate Lymphoid Cells (ILCs). Subsequently we have highlighted the main inflammatory pathways, including intra-and extra-cellular players. A better knowledge of such processes could determine the detection of new therapeutic targets that are a major need for pSS

    Awake one stage bilateral thoracoscopic sympathectomy for palmar hyperhidrosis: a safe outpatient procedure

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    OBJECTIVE: To verify the feasibility and compare the results of thoracoscopic sympathectomy under local anaesthesia (LA) and spontaneous breathing vs. general anaesthesia (GA) with one-lung ventilation. METHODS: Two groups of consecutive patients underwent one stage bilateral T2-T3 thoracoscopic sympathectomy under LA (n=15) and GA (n=30) by the same surgical team for treatment of primary palmar hyperhidrosis. The groups were homogeneous for relevant demographic, physiological and clinical data, including pulmonary function. In both groups, patient's satisfaction was evaluated 24h after surgery by a simple interview and scored into five grades (1=very poor to 5=excellent), while quality of life (QOL) was evaluated by SF-36 and Nottingham's Health Profile questionnaires before and 6 months after surgery. A cost comparison between groups concerning devices, drugs, global in operating room time, medical personnel and hospital stay was also carried out. RESULTS: No operative mortality was recorded. The overall in operating room time for the whole bilateral procedure under LA was 63.55+/-10.58 vs. 86.05+/-5.75 under GA (P<0.01) and temperature increased in all patients from a baseline of 25.42+/-0.56 up to 32.15+/-0.84 degrees C. All patients undergone LA were discharged the same day after a chest roentgenogram and a short stay in the outpatient clinic. Among them three patients (20%) experienced a minimal (<30%) pneumothorax that required no treatment, while five (33.3%) had a trunk compensatory sweating that spontaneously resolved on the long run. Patients undergoing GA were discharged after a mean stay of 1.38+/-0.6 days. Among these, eight (26.6%) had prolonged trunk compensatory sweating that did not persist longer than 3 months. At a follow-up of 7.16+/-2.97 months, QOL was significantly improved with no difference between groups. The overall rate of satisfaction was greater in the LA group (P<0.05). CONCLUSIONS: In our study, awake one stage bilateral thoracoscopic sympathectomy for palmar hyperhidrosis could be safely and effectively performed as an outpatient procedure in patients refusing GA. Postoperative quality of life was equal to that in patients undergone the same procedure under GA, while patient satisfaction was better and cost were significantly reduced

    Blocking CD248 molecules in perivascular stromal cells of patients with systemic sclerosis strongly inhibits their differentiation toward myofibroblasts and proliferation: A new potential target for antifibrotic therapy

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    Background: Fibrosis may be considered the hallmark of systemic sclerosis (SSc), the end stage triggered by different pathological events. Transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) and platelet-derived growth factor BB (PDGF-BB) are profibrotic molecules modulating myofibroblast differentiation and proliferation, respectively. There is evidence linking CD248 with these two molecules, both highly expressed in patients with SSc, and suggesting that CD248 may be a therapeutic target for several diseases. The aim of this work was to evaluate the expression of CD248 in SSc skin and its ability to modulate SSc fibrotic process. Methods: After ethical approval was obtained, skin biopsies were collected from 20 patients with SSc and 10 healthy control subjects (HC). CD248 expression was investigated in the skin, as well as in bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) treated with TGF-β or PDGF-BB, by immunofluorescence, qRT-PCR, and Western blotting. Finally, in SSc-MSCs, the CD248 gene was silenced by siRNA. Results: Increased expression of CD248 was found in endothelial cells and perivascular stromal cells of SSc skin. In SSc-MSCs, the levels of CD248 and α-smooth muscle actin expression were significantly higher than in HC-MSCs. In both SSc- and HC-MSCs, PDGF-BB induced increased expression of Ki-67 when compared with untreated cells but was unable to modulate CD248 levels. After CD248 silencing, both TGF-β and PDGF-BB signaling were inhibited in SSc-MSCs. Conclusions: CD248 overexpression may play an important role in the fibrotic process by modulating the molecular target, leading to perivascular cells differentiation toward myofibroblasts and interfering with its expression, and thus might open a new therapeutic strategy to inhibit myofibroblast generation during SSc

    Adult-onset Still's disease: Evaluation of prognostic tools and validation of the systemic score by analysis of 100 cases from three centers

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    Background: Adult-onset Still's disease (AOSD) is rare inflammatory disease of unknown etiology that usually affects young adults. The more common clinical manifestations are spiking fevers, arthritis, evanescent rash, elevated liver enzymes, lymphadenopathy, hepatosplenomegaly, and serositis. The multi-visceral involvement of the disease and the different complications, such as macrophage activation syndrome, may strongly decrease the life expectancy of AOSD patients. Methods: This study aimed to identify the positive and negative features correlated with the outcome of patients. A retrospective analysis of AOSD patients prospectively admitted to three rheumatologic centers was performed to identify the clinical features present at the time of diagnosis and to predict the possible outcome. Furthermore, we investigated the as yet to be validated prognostic value of the systemic score previously proposed. Results: One hundred consecutive AOSD patients were enrolled. The mean systemic score showed that the majority of patients had a multi-organ involvement. Sixteen patients showed different complications, mainly the macrophage activation syndrome. A strong increase of inflammatory markers was observed. All patients received steroids at different dosages, 55 patients in association with immunosuppressive drugs and 32 in association with biologic agents. Sixteen patients died during the follow-up. Regression analysis showed that the higher values of the systemic score and the presence of AOSD-related complications, assessed at the time of diagnosis, were significantly correlated with patient mortality. A prognostic impact of the systemic score of 65 7.0 was reported. Conclusions: Our study showed that a higher systemic score and the presence of AOSD-related complications at the time of diagnosis were significantly associated with mortality. Of note, a cut-off at 7.0 of the systemic score showed a strong prognostic impact in identifying patients at risk of AOSD-related death
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