Correlation of plasma interleukin 1 levels with disease activity in rheumatoid arthritis

Lancet. 1988 Sep 24;2(8613):706-9. doi: 10.1016/s0140-6736(88)90185-7.


The mean plasma level of interleukin 1 beta (IL-1 beta), measured by immunoassay, was significantly higher in 51 patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) than in 21 healthy controls of similar age. Further, in the RA group, plasma IL-1 beta correlated positively with Ritchie joint index, pain score, and erythrocyte sedimentation rate and correlated negatively with haemoglobin concentration. In individual patients with active disease who had serial measurements, plasma IL-1 beta also correlated with clinical disease activity. These results support the idea that IL-1 beta has a central role in the pathogenesis of RA.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / blood*
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / etiology
  • Blood Sedimentation
  • Diagnosis-Related Groups*
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Hemoglobins / analysis
  • Humans
  • Interleukin-1 / analysis*
  • Interleukin-1 / therapeutic use
  • Middle Aged
  • Severity of Illness Index*
  • Time Factors


  • Hemoglobins
  • Interleukin-1