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C-reactive protein and implications in rheumatoid arthritis and associated comorbidities

Pope, Janet E. and Choy, Ernest H. 2021. C-reactive protein and implications in rheumatoid arthritis and associated comorbidities. Seminars in Arthritis and Rheumatism 51 (1) , pp. 219-229. 10.1016/j.semarthrit.2020.11.005

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C-reactive protein (CRP) is routinely assessed as a marker of systemic inflammation in rheumatoid arthritis (RA). However, it is also an immune regulator that plays an important role in inflammatory pathways associated with RA and promotes atherogenic effects. Comorbidities linked to systemic inflammation are common in RA, and CRP has been associated with the risk for cardiovascular disease, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, pulmonary diseases, and depression. The relationship between systemic inflammation, CRP, and comorbidities in RA is complex, and it is challenging to determine how changing CRP levels may affect the risk or progression of these comorbidities. We review the biological role of CRP in RA and its implications for disease activity and treatment response. We also discuss the impact of treatment on CRP levels and whether reducing systemic inflammation and inhibiting CRP-mediated inflammatory pathways may have an impact on conditions commonly comorbid with RA.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Medicine
Additional Information: This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0049-0172
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 22 January 2021
Date of Acceptance: 5 November 2020
Last Modified: 25 Jan 2021 10:15

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