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Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is the most common autoimmune disease worldwide. Epigenetic alternations of microRNAs (miRNAs) can contribute to its pathogenesis and progression. As the first line therapy with DMARDs is not always successful, other drugs and therapeutic targets should be applied. This study aims to measure the expression level of plasma miRNAs in RA patients treated with olokizumab and to evaluate their potential as prognostic biomarkers. The expression of 9 miRNAs was quantified in 103 RA patients before treatment and at weeks 12 and 24 of olokizumab therapy by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) assay and analyzed in groups of responders and non-responders. Almost all miRNAs changed their expression during therapy. The ROC curve analysis of the most prominent of them together with consequent univariate and multivariate regression analysis revealed statistically significant associations with the olokizumab therapy efficiency scores for miR-26b, miR-29, miR-451, and miR-522. Therefore, these miRNAs might be a potential therapeutic response biomarker.
Download the full article co-authored by the Head of Biostatistics at OCT Clinical, Kristina Bondareva.