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Surface APRIL Is Elevated on Myeloid Cells and Is Associated with Disease Activity in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To assess surface APRIL (a proliferation-inducing ligand; CD256) expression by circulating myeloid cells in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and to determine its relationship to disease activity. METHODS: Peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) and plasma were obtained from patients with RA and healthy donors. PBMC were stained for flow cytometry to detect surface APRIL and blood cell markers to identify circulating myeloid cell subsets. Based on CD14 and CD16 phenotypes, monocyte subsets described as classical (CD14+CD16-), intermediate (CD14+CD16+), and nonclassical (CD14loCD16+) were identified. Levels of surface APRIL expression were measured by flow cytometry and median fluorescence intensity was used for comparisons. Levels of soluble APRIL in the plasma were determined by ELISA. Disease activity was measured by the Disease Activity Score in 28 joints. RESULTS: In patients with RA, total myeloid cells showed expression of surface APRIL that correlated with disease activity and with plasma APRIL levels observed in these patients. In healthy donors, classical monocytes were composed of > 80% of circulating monocytes. However, in patients with RA, the intermediate and nonclassical subsets were elevated and made up the majority of circulating monocytes. In contrast to healthy donors, where high levels of surface APRIL were only observed in nonclassical monocytes, patients with RA showed high levels of surface APRIL expression by all circulating monocyte subsets. CONCLUSION: Surface APRIL is elevated in circulating myeloid cells in patients with RA where it is highly correlated with disease activity. Patients with RA also showed skewing of monocytes toward subsets associated with secretion of tumor necrosis factor-α and/or interleukin 1β.

Authors: Weldon AJ, Moldovan I, Cabling MG, Hernandez EA, Hsu S, Gonzalez J, Parra A, Benitez A, Daoud N, Colburn K, Payne KJ.
Journal: J Rheumatol.;42:749-59
Year: 2015
PubMed: Find in PubMed