Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and osteoarthritis (OA) are the major types of arthritis. Although both diseases are characterized by joint destruction, their etiologies are different. To get insights into pathophysiological pathways, we used the suppression subtractive hybridization (SSH) method to identify differentially expressed genes in RA. DNA sequencing identified 12 gene products including cytoskeletal gamma-actin and extracellular matrix components such as fibronectin, collagen III alpha(1), and superficial zone protein. Interferon gamma-inducible genes such as a novel thiol reductase, two genes of unknown function (HSIFNIN4, RING3), and annexin II were also found. Two genes encoded proteins involved in proliferation such as elongation factor 1 alpha and the granulin precursor. Furthermore, the protease cathepsin B and synovial phospholipase A2 group IIA were detected by SSH. To confirm the differential expression of the genes, we performed RT-PCR analyses of RA and OA synovial tissues. Compared to OA patients, 9 of the 12 genes were overexpressed in RA, suggesting that SSH is a powerful tool for the detection of differential gene expression in synovial tissues. Further characterization of the gene products may help to identify pathophysiological mechanisms in arthritic diseases.
Copyright 2000 Academic Press.