Can rheumatoid arthritis (RA) biomarkers be used to diagnose early RA?

Updated: Feb 07, 2020
  • Author: Howard R Smith, MD; Chief Editor: Herbert S Diamond, MD  more...
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A trial that tested for 4 novel RA biomarkers improved the diagnosis of early RA in patients who tested negative on conventional tests. [50, 51] In the study comprising 293 RA patients, 97 healthy control subjects, and 87 rheumatic control patients with other arthritides, the panel of 4 biomarkers—UH-RA.1, UH-RA.9, UH-RA.14 and UH-RA.21had 83% specificity for RA. [51] These markers were found in 37% of patients with early RA and 26% of those who were seronegative for rheumatoid factor and anticitrullinated protein antibody. The investigators suggested that in addition to an improved diagnosis in early RA, use of these biomarkers may also have prognostic potential. [51]

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