Porphyromonas Gingivalis antibodies increase before rheumatoid arthritis onset
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic poly-arthritis that is characterized by specific serological alterations, including expression of antibodies directed against citrullinated protein antigens (anti-citrullinated protein antibodies [ACPAs]). RA and periodontal disease (PD) are two common chronic inflammatory diseases affecting humans worldwide.
Chronic periodontitis has been considered as an important determinant in both occurrence and severity of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). It has been hypothesized that citrullination by the periodontal pathogen Porphyromonas gingivalis may play an important role in the development of RA-specific autoimmunity, by breaking immune tolerance to citrullinated proteins and trigger the production of anti-citrullinated protein antibodies. Researchers from Sweden have studied if anti P. gingivalis antibodies antedate RA symptom onset and ACPA production.
They identified 251 RA cases and 198 controls who had banked blood samples before the onset of RA symptoms by 5.2 years. Blood samples were analyzed for antibodies to Porphyromonas gingivalis virulence factor arginine gingipainB (RgpB), and a citrullinated peptide (CPP3) derived from the Porphyromonas gingivalis peptidylarginine deiminase enzyme with the aid of ELISA.
They found significantly high antibody levels against Porphyromonas gingivalis that were present years before onset of symptoms of RA, thereby supporting an etiological role for Porphyromonas gingivalis in RA.