The role of mucosal inflammation in initiation of rheumatoid arthritis

Koen Martin Jan Janssen

    Research output: ThesisThesis fully internal (DIV)

    694 Downloads (Pure)


    Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease characterized by chronic inflammation of the synovial joints resulting in irreversible damage to bone and cartilage. Early treatment is of paramount importance to stop progression of the disease. Early recognition is therefore very important. Rheumatoid arthritis is characterized by the presence of autoantibodies directed against self citrullinated proteins (ACPA) and rheumatoid factor (RF).

    Present research focused on the question whether mucosal inflammation, viz., periodontitis, chronic inflammation of lung mucosal tissues and inflammatory bowel disease predispose to rheumatoid arthritis associated autoantibody production. Periodontitis in particular has been suggested to predispose for the production of rheumatoid arthritis associated autoantibodies via the periodontal pathogen Porphyromonas gingivalis.

    Indeed, presence of these autoantibodies in patients without rheumatoid arthritis was associated with periodontitis or lung mucosal inflammation, although overall levels were low. Another aim was to investigate immunological alterations in seropositive arthralgia patients (ACPA and/or RF positive) to identify immune markers that may be involved in disease development.
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Awarding Institution
    • University of Groningen
    • Vissink, Arjan, Supervisor
    • Winkelhoff ,van, Arie, Supervisor
    • Westra, Hannie, Co-supervisor
    • Brouwer, Liesbeth, Co-supervisor
    • Abbas, Frank, Assessment committee
    • van der Helm-van Mil, A., Assessment committee, External person
    • Dijkstra, Gerard, Assessment committee
    Award date21-Nov-2016
    Place of Publication[Groningen]
    Print ISBNs978-94-6182-738-8
    Electronic ISBNs978-94-6182-739-5
    Publication statusPublished - 2016

    Cite this