Alpha interferon-2a (Roferon-A) in the treatment of diffuse cutaneous systemic sclerosis: a pilot study. UK Systemic Sclerosis Study Group

Br J Rheumatol. 1992 Oct;31(10):683-9. doi: 10.1093/rheumatology/31.10.683.


Intramuscular alpha-interferon improved or stabilized skin score in 10/14 (71%) patients with diffuse cutaneous systemic sclerosis. In 64% of patients, their treating physicians rated it as having stabilized or improved the disease. However, it had no significant effect on grip strength, digital contractures, respiratory function or visceral involvement. Type I collagen synthesis was significantly reduced in fibroblasts cultured from clinically 'uninvolved' skin but not in those from lesional skin. Amino-terminal procollagen III peptides in the interferon treated group were not significantly reduced after 6 months of therapy but showed a trend towards stabilization and reduction compared to disease matched controls on no therapy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Collagen / biosynthesis
  • Drug Evaluation
  • Female
  • Fibroblasts / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Interferon alpha-2
  • Interferon-alpha / adverse effects
  • Interferon-alpha / therapeutic use*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Peptide Fragments / metabolism
  • Pilot Projects
  • Procollagen / metabolism
  • Prospective Studies
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Scleroderma, Systemic / metabolism
  • Scleroderma, Systemic / therapy*
  • Skin / metabolism


  • Interferon alpha-2
  • Interferon-alpha
  • Peptide Fragments
  • Procollagen
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • procollagen Type III-N-terminal peptide
  • Collagen