Objective: To evaluate the effects of the anti-TNF-α monoclonal antibody golimumab, administered by s.c. injection or i.v. infusion, on markers of inflammation in patients with RA.
Methods: In this phase 1, open-label study, patients with active RA were randomized to receive s.c. golimumab 100 mg at baseline and every 4 weeks through week 20 (n = 33; group 1) or i.v. golimumab 2 mg/kg at baseline and week 12 (n = 16; group 2). Serum levels of CRP, IL-6, serum amyloid A (SAA), TNF receptor II (TNFRII), MMP-3, hyaluronic acid, haptoglobin, ferritin and haemoglobin and serum/urine hepcidin were measured at various time points. Associations between the biomarkers were assessed with Spearman's correlations.
Results: In both groups 1 and 2, decreases in mean serum levels of CRP, IL-6, SAA, TNFRII, MMP-3, haptoglobin, ferritin and hepcidin, and mean urine levels of hepcidin occurred within 1 week and were sustained through week 8. Decreases in concentrations of serum CRP, IL-6, SAA, MMP-3, hepcidin, ferritin and haptoglobin and urine hepcidin were maintained through week 24 in group 1, but began to reverse after week 8 in group 2. Among all patients, decreases in serum hepcidin correlated significantly with decreases in serum CRP and ferritin.
Conclusion: Decreases in serum and urine concentrations of markers of inflammation occurred as early as 24 h after treatment with golimumab, and most of these improvements were sustained through week 24 in group 1.
Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01362153.
Keywords: biological markers; golimumab; hepcidin; pharmacodynamics; rheumatoid arthritis.