Humoral and Cellular Patterns of Early Endothelial Progenitor Cells in Relation to the Cardiovascular Risk in Axial Spondylarthritis

Susann Patschan, Maria Vogt, Donia Bakhtiari, Carsten Peter Bramlage, Elvira Henze, Gerhard Anton Muller, Andreas Krause, Daniel Patschan

Abstract


Background: Spondylarthritis (SpA) significantly affects sacroiliac, intervertebral and peripheral joints. Patients with SpA suffer from increased cardiovascular risk (CVR). The endothelial progenitor cell (EPC) system critically perpetuates vascular repair. The aim of the study was to evaluate circulating EPCs in axial (ax)SpA with special attention on parameters of disease activity and CVR.

Methods: Disease activity and functional impairment were quantified in 50 axSpA patients by using standardized parameters (Bath ankylosing spondylitis disease activity index (BASDAI), C-reactive protein (CRP), finger-floor distance (FFD) and Ott’ sign). Circulating EPCs and EPC regeneration were analyzed (fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) and colony-forming unit (CFU) assay). Serum vasomodulatory mediators were quantified by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA).

Results: EPC colony numbers were lower in axSpA as compared to controls. Females displayed more colonies than males. In addition, fewer colonies were observed in smokers, in patients with a BASDAI of below 4 and in hypertension. Circulating CD133+/KDR+ cells did not differ between the groups. Follow-up analysis (33 months later) did not show any differences in gender, colony formation, CD133+/KDR+ cells or serum levels of vasomodulatory mediators if related to the categories of BASDAI, Ott’ sign or FFD.

Conclusions: EPC colony formation is significantly affected in axSpA with particularly low levels in males. EPC-related parameters do not allow predicting disease activity-related or functional parameters nor are they useful for CVR assessment in SpA.




J Clin Med Res. 2019;11(6):391-400
doi: https://doi.org/10.14740/jocmr3441w


Keywords


SpA; EPCs; Cardiovascular risk

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