Background. Oxidative stress may play an important role in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) etiopathogenesis. The thiol group is a very strong antioxidant. In this study, we aimed to investigate the presence of oxidative stress in patients with RA by evaluating thiol/disulfide homeostasis.
Material and methods. A total of 50 female RA patients and 50 healthy female controls were included in this study. Thiol and disulfide values were calculated utilizing novel methods.
Results. Native thiol (p < 0.001) and total thiol (p < 0.001) levels of RA patients were significantly lower compared to values in the control group. However, the disulfide (p < 0.001) levels of RA patients were strongly higher than in healthy individuals. A negative correlation was found between thiol and disease activity score-28 among the patients, whereas a positive correlation was found between disulfide and disease activity score-28 among the patients.
Conclusion. We found that the thiol–disulfide rate deteriorated in RA patients, with the proportion of disulfide increasing. There is a strong correlation between the decrease in thiol levels, increase in disulfide levels and the disease activity scores.