Bret S. Stetka, MD; Sarah Ringold, MD


July 29, 2014

The Results

Medscape: What did you find?

Dr. Ringold: The MBDA test developed to monitor disease activity in RA correlates well with measures of clinical disease activity in JIA, including the JADAS, physician's global assessment, parent's global assessment, and active joint counts. Furthermore, the concentrations of biomarkers in patients with clinically inactive disease closely resembled those of a control set of patients without disease, whereas those with active disease presented with higher concentrations of biomarkers.

Of note, 9 patients met criteria for clinically inactive disease yet had elevated MBDA scores, indicating the potential for ongoing inflammatory disease not detected by conventional measures.

Conversely, 4 patients had evidence of significant disease activity on physical examination -- eg, large numbers of active joints, but no evidence of inflammatory disease using the MBDA. These were baseline samples from patients who were therapy-naive. These patients point out the heterogeneity of JIA and may represent an alternative classification.

Medscape: What are the clinical implications of your study for practicing clinicians?

Dr. Ringold: Although the MBDA for use in JIA will require additional studies to validate the approach, a commercially available blood test to assess disease activity in children with JIA and to assist in the identification of children with JIA who have achieved inactive disease may be possible in the near future.


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