Poor expression of T cell-derived cytokines and activation and proliferation markers in early rheumatoid synovial tissue

Clin Immunol Immunopathol. 1998 Jul;88(1):84-90. doi: 10.1006/clin.1998.4525.


We compared the state of activation and proliferation of T cells in synovial tissue (ST) from rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients in early and late stages of the disease to find out whether T-cell-driven immune responses vary during the course of the disease. ST was obtained from 12 patients with early RA (< 1 year) and 12 patients with longstanding RA (> 5 years). T cells and interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma)-positive cells were detected in ST using immunohistologic methods. To determine the percentage of T cells expressing the interleukin-2 receptor, IFN-gamma, or the proliferation associated antigen Ki-67, immunofluorescence double-staining techniques were used. The scores for the number of T cells and for the expression of IFN-gamma as well as the percentages of T cells expressing CD25, IFN-gamma, or Ki-67 in rheumatoid synovium were not dependent on disease duration. These results do not support the assumption that the responsiveness of T cells in ST of RA patients differs between early and late stages of the disease. The data indicate that at present no arguments exist that the effect of T-cell-directed interventions on synovial inflammation might vary in different stages of the disease.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / etiology
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / immunology*
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / pathology
  • Cell Division
  • Cytokines / metabolism*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Interferon-gamma / metabolism
  • Ki-67 Antigen / metabolism
  • Lymphocyte Activation
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2 / metabolism
  • Synovial Membrane / immunology*
  • Synovial Membrane / pathology
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • T-Lymphocytes / pathology
  • Time Factors


  • Cytokines
  • Ki-67 Antigen
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2
  • Interferon-gamma