Close menu


Sunderland Repository records the research produced by the University of Sunderland including practice-based research and theses.

Profound invariant natural killer T-cell deficiency in inflammatory arthritis

Falconer, Jane, Tudhope, SJ, von Delwig, A, Pratt, A, Woolridge, T, Wilson, G, Isaacs, JD and Ng, WF (2010) Profound invariant natural killer T-cell deficiency in inflammatory arthritis. Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases, 69-10 (10). ISSN 1468-2060

Item Type: Article


Objectives Data from rodent models indicate that invariant natural killer T (iNKT) cells are key regulators of many immune responses including autoimmune arthritis, but their role in human diseases is unclear. The aims of this study are to determine whether iNKT cell frequency and function are altered in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), and the clinical significance of such iNKT cell abnormalities.

Methods Peripheral blood iNKT cell frequency and proliferative response to an iNKT cell-specifi c agonist,α-galactosylceramide were measured in 46 RA patients (including 23 untreated, newly diagnosed patients), 22 healthy controls and 27 patients presenting with recent onset joint pain. The relationship between iNKT cell frequency and clinical characteristics and the effects of immunosuppressive treatment was examined. Results Compared with healthy controls, RA patients had a decreased frequency of peripheral blood iNKT cells (median 0.001% vs 0.021%, p<0.001) and the proliferative response of this subset to
α-galactosylceramide was also diminished in the patient group (median fold-expansion 31 vs 121,p=0.037). These abnormalities preceded the initiation of disease-modifying or immunosuppressive therapy, whose effect was to increase the circulating iNKT cell frequency (p=0.037). Furthermore, iNKT cell frequency correlated inversely with the systemic inflammatory marker, C-reactive protein (p=0.008). Finally, in patients presenting with recent-onset joint symptoms, normal peripheral blood iNKT cell frequency predicted a noninflammatory cause of joint pain.
Conclusion iNKT cell deficiency is present in patients
with RA and other inflammatory arthropathy. Normal iNKT
cell frequency predicts non-inflammatory causes of joint

[img] PDF (Primary Research Article)
ARD 2010.pdf - Published Version
Restricted to Repository staff only

Download (342kB) | Request a copy

More Information

Depositing User: Jane Falconer


Item ID: 11082
ISSN: 1468-2060

Users with ORCIDS

ORCID for Jane Falconer: ORCID iD

Catalogue record

Date Deposited: 06 Sep 2019 13:37
Last Modified: 30 Sep 2020 11:30


Author: Jane Falconer ORCID iD
Author: SJ Tudhope
Author: A von Delwig
Author: A Pratt
Author: T Woolridge
Author: G Wilson
Author: JD Isaacs
Author: WF Ng

University Divisions

Faculty of Health Sciences and Wellbeing > School of Medicine

Actions (login required)

View Item (Repository Staff Only) View Item (Repository Staff Only)