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  • Author: Bojana Stamenković x
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Open access

Hristina Kocić, Bojana Stamenković, Danijela Popović, Zorana Zlatanović, Tomislav Marković and Danica Tiodorović


CREST syndrome represents a form of scleroderma where the progressive autoimmune reaction is mainly manifested by the main symptoms, which make this acronym: calcinosis cutis, Raynaud phenomenon, esophageal dysmotility, sclerodactyly and teleangiectasia. Among the first affected organs is the skin followed by the excessive fibrosis manifested by the deposition of collagen in dermis. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) theory has been underlined as one of the main pathogenetic mechanisms and triggering factor in development of scleroderma. The present study was aimed at estimating the marker of lipid peroxidation products (MDA) in plasma of patients with CREST syndrome having manifested symptoms of both Raynaud syndrome and positive ANA antibodies. The lipid peroxidation (MDA) level was significantly higher in the patients who had CREST syndrome and Raynaud syndrome for less than 10 years compared to the patients suffering from Raynoud syndrome for more than 10 years (p<0.05). Both groups were found to have a significant MDA level increase (p<0.001) compared to the control healthy subjects. In conclusion, the relationship between lipid peroxidation (MDA level) and Raynaud syndrome appearance may emphasize the role of ROS produced by the ischemia-reperfusion injury as an early pathogenetic mechanism in CREST scleroderma syndrome.

Open access

Sonja Stojanović, Bojana Stamenković, Jovan Nedović, Tatjana Jevtović-Stoimenov and Dušica Pavlović


To examine whether the presence of the rare A allele of the TNF-Alpha-308 G/A gene polymorphism is associated with erosive arthritis and rapid radiological progression of the disease.

The examined group included 131 patients with early RA. Using the PCR-RFLP method, the TNF-Alpha-308 G/A gene polymorphism was determined for all patients. In relation to the presence of the A allele of the examined polymorphism, the patients were divided into two subgroups: subgroup A (G/A and A/A genotypes) and subgroup G (G/G genotype). Based on the presence of the destructive changes in joints found in the initial radiographs, the findings were classified as erosive and non-erosive RA. Radiological progression was assessed on the basis of the annual change in the Larsen score – LS (0-200).

Group A comprised 62 (47.33%) patients, while group G comprised 69 (52.67%) patients. The presence of cysts and erosions in subgroups A and G was compared before the start of the methotrexate therapy. It was determined that erosions (erosive RA) were statistically significantly more frequent in group A (83.87% of patients) in comparison with group G (44.93% of patients), p < 0,001. Group A patients had a higher value of the Larsen score in relation to the group G both before and after methotrexate was administered for a year (before therapy, LS in group A: 48.58 ± 20.54; in group G 20.73 ± 12.31; p < 0.01; after MTX therapy, LS in group A: 58.32 ± 22.25; in group G 25.35 ± 14.57; p < 0.001). The average value of the annual LS change in group A was statistically significantly greater than the change in group G patients (9.98 ± 4.95 to 5.23 ± 2.72) (p < 0.05).

The presence of the A allele of the TNF-Alpha-308 G/A gene polymorphism is associated with the occurrence of early erosive joint changes and more rapid radiological progression of the disease.

Open access

Vidosava Đorđević, Lilika Zvezdanović, Vladan Ćosić, Predrag Vlahović, Slavica Kundalić, Tatjana Jevtović-Stoimenov, Bojana Stamenković and Dragoslav Mitrović

Serum Levels and in Vitro Production of Th1- and Th2-Type Cytokines by Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cells in Patients Suffering from Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

Th1-type and Th2-type cytokine profiles and adhesion molecules in the serum of patients suffering from systemic lupus erythematosus and the cytokine production by peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) were studied. Tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α), interferongamma (IFN-γ), interleukin-1β (IL-1β), IL-4, IL-10, IL-13, intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) and vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1) were measured using ELISA technique in the sera of 16 systemic lupus erythematosus patients without vasculitis (SLE), 30 SLE patients with vasculitis (LV), and in 18 healthy controls. The cytokines were also measured in the culture media of unstimulated, concana valin-A (Con-A) and phorbol-12-myristate-13-acetate (PMA) stimulated PBMC. TNF-α serum levels were significantly elevated in both SLE and LV patients and those of IL-1β in SLE patients. TNF-α was also significantly increased in SLE compared to LV patients. Serum levels of all three Th-2 cytokines were significantly elevated in both SLE and LV patients compared to healthy controls. Serum IFN-γ and Th2 cytokine levels were significantly increased in patients with more active disease. Both ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 were significantly increased in SLE patients and only VCAM-1 in LV patients. ICAM-1 showed a significant correlation with IL-1β, IFN-γ, IL-4 and IL-10 in both patient groups. In the SLE group VCAM-1 correlated significantly only with ICAM-1, but in the LV group only with IL-1β and IFN-γ. Compared to healthy controls, basal TNF-α and IL-4 production by unstimulated PBMC derived from SLE patients were significantly increased. Con-A-stimulated PBMC of both SLE groups produced significantly more IFN-γ, IL-4 and IL-13 than Con-A-stimulated control cells. Con-A-stimulated cells derived from LV patients produced much more INF-γ than cells from SLE patients. PMA strongly stimulated INFγ, TNFα and IL-13 production by cells derived from both SLE groups but had no effect on IL-4 production. In addition, it had little if any effect on the production of INFγ and IL-13 by PBMC derived from healthy donors. These findings suggest that the altered pattern of cytokine production by PBMC may play an important role in the SLE pathophysiology, accounting for differences in the clinical expression of the disease. The differences in adhesion molecules production and their correlation with cytokines suggest ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 as useful markers in SLE patients stratification.