Advances in Clinical and Experimental Medicine

Title abbreviation: Adv Clin Exp Med
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ISSN 1899–5276 (print)
ISSN 2451-2680 (online)
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Advances in Clinical and Experimental Medicine

2016, vol. 25, nr 1, January-February, p. 43–50

doi: 10.17219/acem/29847

Publication type: original article

Language: English

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Disease Activity, Oxidized-LDL Fraction and Anti-Oxidized LDL Antibodies Influence Cardiovascular Risk in Rheumatoid Arthritis

Beata Nowak1,2,A,B,C,D,F, Marta Madej3,A,B,D,F, Anna Łuczak3,B,E,F, Rafał Małecki4,A,B,E,F, Piotr Wiland3,E,F

1 Department of Pharmacology, Wroclaw Medical University, Poland

2 Clinic of Rheumatology and Internal Medicine, Wroclaw Medical University Hospital, Poland

3 Department and Clinic of Rheumatology and Internal Medicine, Wroclaw Medical University, Poland

4 Department of Angiology, Hypertension and Diabetology, Wroclaw Medical University, Poland


Background. Patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) have a shortened lifespan compared to the general population. The high rate of premature mortality in the RA population can be attributed to cardiovascular disease (CVD).
Objectives. The aim of the study was to look for non-classic risk factors that can at least partially explain the enhanced cardiovascular (CV) risk in patients with RA.
Material and Methods. This was an observational study with 37 RA patients and 24 healthy volunteers as controls. The participants’ medical history was taken, and systematic coronary risk evaluation (SCORE) and carotid ultrasonography examinations were performed on all the participants. Laboratory tests included antibodies anti-cyclic citrullinated peptide (anti-CCP), inflammatory markers, lipid level, oxidized low-density lipoprotein (oxLDL) level and the level of anti-oxLDL antibodies.
Results. Both SCORE and oxLDL fraction were elevated in RA patients as compared to the healthy controls (3.1 ± 3.7 vs. 0.8 ± 1.2, p = 0.005; and 0.029 ± 0.033% vs. 0.014 ± 0.006%, p = 0.04, respectively). In the RA group, the presence of anti-CCP was associated with thickening of the carotid intima-media complex and SCORE elevation. In the RA group, significant correlations were found between SCORE and mean carotid intima-media thickness (IMT; RP = 0.34, p = 0.040), disease activity score (RP = 0.42, p = 0.011), erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR; RP = 0.35, p = 0.036), and disease duration (RP = 0.52, p = 0.002). In RA patients with carotid plaques, the oxLDL fraction was significantly elevated in comparison to those without plaques (0.055 ± 0.070% vs. 0.022 ± 0.018%, p = 0.033). In the RA group, there was a significant negative correlation between mean carotid IMT and the serum concentration of anti-oxLDL antibodies (RP = –0.38, p = 0.02). No association was noted between the presence of rheumatoid nodules and SCORE or carotid IMT.
Conclusion. Among RA patients, disease activity, ESR, disease duration, the presence of anti-CCP antibodies, the oxLDL fraction and the level of anti-oxLDL antibodies influence CV risk.

Key words

intima-media thickness, oxidized low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, anti-oxidized low-density lipoprotein cholesterol antibodies, rheumatoid arthritis, systematic coronary risk evaluation

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