Serum levels of lipoprotein(a) and E-selectin are reduced in rheumatoid arthritis patients treated with methotrexate or methotrexate in combination with TNF-α-inhibitor

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Lillehammer Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases and Oslo University, Norway. gunn.hjeltnes@revmatismesykehuset.no

CER5892 Submission on line
2013 Vol.31, N°3 - PI 0415, PF 0421
Full Paper

Rheumatology Article



To examine the effect of methotrexate (MTX) with or without tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α)-inhibitors on serum lipoprotein(a) (s-Lp(a)), and to explore a possible relationship between s-Lp(a) and endothelial function (EF) in terms of serum levels of adhesion molecules and reactive hyperaemic index (RHI) in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
Serum levels of Lp(a), endothelial adhesion molecules, RHI and inflammatory markers were studied in 64 RA patients, starting with either MTX (n=34) or MTX+TNF-α-inhibitor treatment (n=30) at baseline and after 6 weeks and 6 months.
Compared to baseline values, s-Lp(a) was significantly reduced after 6 weeks (p=0.001) and 6 months (p=0.001) in RA patients treated with MTX, and after 6 weeks (p=0.001) in the MTX+TNF-α-inhibitor group. A non-significant reduction was found after 6 months (p=0.102) in the MTX+TNFα-inhibitor group. Serum E-selectin (s-E-selectin) was significantly reduced in both RA treatment groups at both control points. S-Lp(a) correlated positively with s-E-selectin at baseline (p=0.004), and change in s-E-selectin correlated with the change in s-Lp(a) during follow-up (p6weeks= 0.008, p6months=0.009). No association was found between s-Lp(a) and the other adhesion molecules and RHI.
MTX or MTX combined with a TNFα-inhibitor appears to significantly reduce Lp(a). This finding indicate that s-Lp(a) might be related to systemic inflammation, or that the examined drugs might reduce s-Lp(a) by other mechanisms. Anti-inflammatory treatment might be a novel therapeutic option to decrease s-Lp(a). The associations between s-E-selectin and s-Lp(a) suggest an interaction between these factors, or a common cause.

PMID: 23465067 [PubMed]

Received: 08/08/2012 - Accepted : 22/10/2012 - In Press: 04/03/2013 - Published: 02/05/2013