REVIEW – April 2003

Biochemical markers of arthritis


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Up to now the assessment of arthritis has been based on clinical and radiological investigations. In recent years, a variety of relatively tissue-specific proteins, the so-called joint markers, have been investigated for the same purpose. The article gives an overview of the markers of formation and degradation of cartilage, bone  and synovial membrane, focusing on their metabolism and changes in the pathogenesis of rheumatoid arthritis, juvenile idiopathic arthritis and osteoarthritis. The potential use of the markers of joint metabolism in arthritis can most likely be assessment of the disease course, response to therapy as well as prognosis.