Publication Date: 18 Oct 2012
Type: Original Research
Citation: Clinical Medicine Insights: Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Disorders 2012:5 77-87
Objective: To investigate peripheral blood lymphocyte subpopulations, particularly helper T (Th) cells and cytokine expression before and after treatment in polymyositis (PM) and dermatomyositis (DM).
Patients and Methods: Ten patients with PM and 15 with DM were enrolled in this study. As a control we used 11 age-matched healthy subjects. We analyzed peripheral blood lymphocytes using flow cytometry. Serum cytokines were determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay.
Results: Th2/Th1 and Th2/Th17 ratios were significantly higher in both PM and DM than in controls and this Th2-predominancy is marked in DM associated with interstitial pneumonia. IL-1β, IL-6 and TGF- β were significantly higher in both PM and DM and IL-4 showed a significant increase in DM when compared to controls. There was no significant correlation between either any lymphocyte subpopulations or serum cytokines and clinical severity markers such as the manual muscle strength test, serum creatine kinase, and the total CT score. Th2/Th17 in both PM and DM, as well as Th2/Th1 in the latter, significantly decreased after clinical remission compared with before treatment.
Conclusions: Th2-predominancy as shown by the increase in Th2/Th1 and Th2/Th17 ratios may suggest active disease in PM/DM but does not reflect clinical severity.
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