Anti-inflammatory immunotherapy (T-cell vaccination) for rheumatoid arthritis

Pro-inflammatory autoreactive T lymphocytes specific for cartilage-associated antigens play a pivotal role in the development of rheumatoid arthritis. Standard treatment of rheumatoid arthritis is based on nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), nonbiologic and biologic disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) and non-specific (non-selective) immunosuppressants (hormones, cytostatic agents and others). This treatment fails to interrupt the underlying immunopathological events and is often associated with serious complications.

We developed a lymphocyte autovaccination-based technology to stimulate patient’s immune responses in order to selectively inactivate pathogenic self-reactive lymphocytes.

In our proof-of-concept pilot clinical study, forty-two patients (age 28–58 years; 37 women, 5 men) with rheumatoid arthritis (disease history ≥2 years) were subjected to our innovative T-cell vaccination treatment. Clinical data obtained (Table 1) showed that T cell vaccination of rheumatoid arthritis patients resulted in apparent clinical improvements over a two-year follow-up period.

Table 1. Clinical parameters of rheumatoid arthritis patients.

**Р < 0.001, statistically significant differences in the groups studied before and after treatment (U criterion).

In conclusion, we state that rheumatoid arthritis patients with early and advanced stages of the disease will significantly benefit from the application of autologous T cell vaccination.

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