Cytogenetic alterations in rheumatoid arthritis patients treated with methotrexate and dry olive leaf extract
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Oxidative stress and inflammation are DNA instability factors for rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients. The aims of this study were to evaluate cytogenetic alterations in Peripheral Blood Lymphocytes (PBL) in two groups of RA patients: the early and the long-term RA group; and to examine potential of concomitant treatment with Methotrexate (MTX) and Dry olive leaf extract (DOLE) against cytogenetic damage in RA patients after a 3-weeks treatment. A total of 32 RA patients and 10 healthy individuals were included. RA patients were equally divided into four groups: two groups with early phase RA (one treated with MTX alone, the other in combination with DOLE); and two long-term phase RA groups (group with active disease and group with low disease activity)-both treated with MTX and DOLE combination. PBL cultures were screened for chromosome aberrations and micronuclei frequencies. Significantly increased frequencies of micronuclei were shown in active phase RA disease (both early and long-...term) but not in the group with low disease activity, as compared to controls. Chromosome aberrations were detected for all 4 RA groups. The highest frequencies of micronuclei and chromosome aberrations were found in the long-term active RA group. After 3 weeks-treatment, there were no significant decrease of the micronuclei frequencies compared to baseline, although they were reduced in all RA groups, except for the group with the long-term active disease. High level of cytogenetic damage in RA patients was concordant with duration and activity of the RA disease. At 3 weeks of therapy, neither the combined treatment (MTX+DOLE), nor MTX alone did not affect the frequency of micronuclei formation.