Clinical Relevance of Cytokines and Inflammatory Molecules in Rheumatoid Vasculitis
Rheumatoid vasculitis (RV) is an uncommon but severe complication of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) that can cause skin disorders, such as rash, cutaneous ulcerations and gangrene, neuropathy, eye symptoms, and systemic inflammation. Although the molecular mechanisms underlying RV in RA are unclear, it is well known that a chronic imbalance in the expression of chemokines and proinflammatory cytokines is important for orchestrating inflammatory responses in RA patients, and similar dysregulation of cytokines and other inflammatory molecules, such as adhesion molecules, has been suggested to occur in patients with RV. Recently, we reported elevated levels of the soluble form of CX3CL1, which is a newly described membrane-bound CX3C chemokine, in the serum of patients with RV. In the present review, we discuss the involvement of cytokines and inflammatory molecules in the pathogenesis of RV and evaluate their significance as useful laboratory parameters of active vasculitis disease.
Keywords: Rheumatoid vasculitis, cytokines, chemokines, adhesion molecules, CX3CL1, endothelium
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