Radiographic severity of knee osteoarthritis is conditional on interleukin 1 receptor antagonist gene variations.


BACKGROUND: A lack of biomarkers that identify patients at risk for severe osteoarthritis (OA) complicates development of disease-modifying OA drugs. OBJECTIVE: To determine whether inflammatory genetic markers could stratify patients with knee OA into high and low risk for destructive disease. METHODS: Genotype associations with knee OA severity were assessed in two Caucasian populations. Fifteen single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in six inflammatory genes were evaluated for association with radiographic severity and with synovial fluid mediators in a subset of the patients. RESULTS: Interleukin 1 receptor antagonist (IL1RN) SNPs (rs419598, rs315952 and rs9005) predicted Kellgren-Lawrence scores independently in each population. One IL1RN haplotype was associated with lower odds of radiographic severity (OR=0.15; 95% CI 0.065 to 0.349; p<0.0001), greater joint space width and lower synovial fluid cytokine levels. Carriage of the IL1RN haplotype influenced the age relationship with severity. CONCLUSION: IL1RN polymorphisms reproducibly contribute to disease severity in knee OA and may be useful biomarkers for patient selection in disease-modifying OA drug trials.





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Publication Info

Attur, M, HY Wang, VB Kraus, JF Bukowski, N Aziz, S Krasnokutsky, J Samuels, J Greenberg, et al. (2010). Radiographic severity of knee osteoarthritis is conditional on interleukin 1 receptor antagonist gene variations. Ann Rheum Dis, 69(5). pp. 856–861. 10.1136/ard.2009.113043 Retrieved from

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Virginia Byers Kraus

Mary Bernheim Distinguished Professor of Medicine

Virginia Byers Kraus, MD, PhD, is the Mary Bernheim Distinguished Professor of Medicine, Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery, Professor of Pathology and a faculty member of the Duke Molecular Physiology Institute in the Duke University School of Medicine. She is a practicing Rheumatologist with over 30 years’ experience in translational musculoskeletal research focusing on osteoarthritis, the most common of all arthritides. She trained at Brown University (ScB 1979), Duke University (MD 1982, PhD 1993) and the Duke University School of Medicine (Residency in Internal Medicine and Fellowship in Rheumatology). Her career has focused on elucidating osteoarthritis pathogenesis and translational research into the discovery and validation of biomarkers for early osteoarthritis detection, prediction of progression, monitoring of disease status, and facilitation of therapeutic developments. She is co-PI of the Foundation for NIH Biomarkers Consortium Osteoarthritis project. Trained as a molecular biologist and a Rheumatologist, she endeavors to study disease from bedside to bench.

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