C-reactive protein predicts the long-term progression of interstitial lung disease and survival in patients with early systemic sclerosis.

Liu X, Mayes MD, Phd CP, Draeger HT, Gonzalez EB, Harper BE, Reveille JD, Assassi S.
Journal   Arthritis Care Res
Species  
Analytes Measured   CRP
Matrix Tested   Plasma
Year   2013
Volume  
Page Numbers  
Application   Cytokines and Chemokines
Abstract
OBJECTIVE: There are no identified clinical markers that reliably predict long-term progression of interstitial lung disease (ILD) in systemic sclerosis (SSc). Elevated C-reactive protein(CRP) levels have been reported in SSc patients. We examined the predictive significance of CRP forlong-term ILDprogression in a large early SSc cohort.

METHODS: First, the CRP levels were compared between baseline samples of 266 SSc patients enrolled in the GENISOS cohort and97 unaffected matched controls. Subsequently, the correlation between CRP levels and concomitantly obtained markers of disease severity was assessed.Serially obtained % predicted forced vital capacity (FVC) was used to examine the long-term ILD progression. The predictive significance of CRP was investigated by a joint analysis of longitudinal measurements (serial FVCs up to 13 years) and survival data. This approach allowed inclusion of all 1,016 FVC measurements and accounted for survival dependency.

RESULTS: We confirmed that baseline CRP levels were higher in SScpatients than controls. CRP levels were associated with absence of anti-centromere antibodiesand correlated with the concomitant severity of lung, skin and joint involvement. More importantly, higher baseline CRP levels were associated with shorter survival (p<0.001) and predicted the long-term decline in FVCindependent of potential confounders (age at baseline, gender, ethnicity, disease type, current smoking,body mass index, topoisomerase status, and treatment with immunosuppressive agents) in the multivariable model (p=0.006).

CONCLUSION: Baseline CRP levels are predictive of long-term ILD progression. CRP might aid clinicians in identifying patients that require more intensive monitoring and treatment.

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