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New clues about psoriatic arthritis

(HealthScoutNews) -- Scientists at the University of Rochester Medical Center have identified the molecular factors that cause bone damage in people with psoriatic arthritis, a disease that affects as many as 1 million people in the United States.

Their study, which appears in the March 15 issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, found that people with psoriatic arthritis have an abundance of a type of cell that specializes in dissolving bone.

In addition, their joints contain high amounts of a protein that persuades these bone-dissolving cells to settle into joints and cause damage.

The discovery of this one-two molecular punch may help doctors understand why people with psoriatic arthritis are responding so well to new medicines. The study also provides information that may help develop new ways to treat the disease.

The study included 30 people with psoriatic arthritis and 12 healthy people. The researchers analysed blood samples and examined cells from the synovium. That's the joint lining that normally nourishes a joint but turns invasive and destructive in people with psoriatic arthritis.

While less known than rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis can be just as crippling. It usually strikes people who have psoriasis. About 10 percent to 15 percent of people with psoriasis develop psoriatic arthritis, which usually strikes people in their 20s and 30s.

people with the disease usually suffer pain, swelling and inflammation as the disease eats away at their joints. Some bones or digits such as fingers shrink or even disappear. The disease also causes disfiguring or disabling bone growth in the hands, feet, spine and other joints.

Arthritis in which the synovial membrane becomes inflamed. It's associated with psoriasis, a skin disease. It can also affect the tendons where they attach to the bone.


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Psoriasis is a common skin disease that causes raised red skin with thick silvery scales.


Vitiligo is a disorder in which white patches of skin appear on the body

hair loss

Hair loss usually develops gradually and may be patchy or diffuse


Acne is a disorder of the hair follicles and sebaceous oil glands that leads to skin infections


Inflammation of the skin, often a rash, swelling, pain, itching, cracking. Can be caused by an irritant or allergen

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