Etanercept-induced anti-Jo-1-antibody-positive polymyositis in a patient with rheumatoid arthritis: a case report and review of the literature

Clin Rheumatol. 2010 May;29(5):563-6. doi: 10.1007/s10067-009-1370-1. Epub 2010 Feb 9.


Antitumor necrosis factor (TNF) therapy has been associated with adverse immunologic events including systemic lupus erythematosus. However, the development of polymyositis (PM)/dermatomyositis (DM) associated with anti-TNF therapy is extremely rare. We experienced a case of a 48-year-old female with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) who had anti-Jo-1 antibodies and interstitial lung disease but no previous history of PM/DM and who developed PM soon after the initiation of etanercept (ETN) therapy for RA. The patient recovered upon withdrawal from ETN and corticosteroid (CS) therapies. Only four reports of PM/DM associated with anti-TNF therapy for RA could be found in the literature. The patients described in three of the four reports were positive for anti-Jo-1 antibodies before the initiation of anti-TNF therapy, and in all the cases, recovery occurred after the cessation of anti-TNF-agent administration and CS therapy. These results suggest a relationship between the onset of PM/DM with anti-Jo-1 antibody and anti-TNF therapy for RA.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / adverse effects*
  • Antibodies, Antinuclear / chemistry
  • Antibodies, Antinuclear / immunology*
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / complications*
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / drug therapy*
  • Dermatomyositis / immunology
  • Etanercept
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin G / adverse effects*
  • Inflammation
  • Middle Aged
  • Polymyositis / drug therapy*
  • Polymyositis / immunology*
  • Receptors, Tumor Necrosis Factor


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal
  • Antibodies, Antinuclear
  • Immunoglobulin G
  • Jo-1 antibody
  • Receptors, Tumor Necrosis Factor
  • Etanercept