Decreased MMP-9 activity in the serum of patients with diffuse cutaneous systemic sclerosis

Clin Exp Dermatol. 2002 Jun;27(4):301-5. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-2230.2002.01011.x.


Matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) and its inhibitor, tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinases-1 (TIMP-1) are involved in tissue inflammation and fibrotic processes. We previously reported an elevated serum TIMP-1 level in patients with systemic sclerosis (SSc). We measured serum TIMP-1 and active MMP-9 levels in 62 patients with SSc, 10 patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and 15 normal controls using a modified enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The active MMP-9 level in the serum of the patients with RA or SSc was not significantly different from that of controls. Serum MMP-9 activity in patients with diffuse cutaneous SSc was significantly decreased compared with that of limited cutaneous SSc or normal controls. The MMP-9 activity and modified-Rodnan total skin thickness score in patients with SSc were negatively correlated. Serum MMP-9 activity and TIMP-1 level in patients with SSc were not correlated. Serum MMP-9 activity might be a useful indicator of disease activity, especially skin severity, in SSc patients.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 9 / metabolism*
  • Middle Aged
  • Scleroderma, Systemic / enzymology*
  • Tissue Inhibitor of Metalloproteinase-1 / metabolism


  • Tissue Inhibitor of Metalloproteinase-1
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 9