Our study aimed to investigate whether serum leucine-rich alpha-2-glycoprotein (LRG) levels are elevated in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). In addition, we assessed their correlation with disease activity parameters and pro-inflammatory cytokine, tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α). Our study included 69 patients with RA and 48 age- and sexmatched healthy controls. Serum concentrations of TNF-α and LRG were determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Serum LRG concentrations were significantly elevated in patients with RA compared with those in healthy controls (30.8 ± 14.4 vs. 22.2 ± 6.1 ng/mL; P < 0.001). In patients with RA, serum LRG levels were found to be correlated with disease activity score 28 (DAS28), erythrocyte sedimentation rate, and C-reactive protein levels (γ = 0.671; γ = 0.612; and γ = 0.601, P < 0.001, respectively), but not with serum TNF-α levels. Serum LRG levels in patients with an active disease status (DAS28 ≥ 2.6) were significantly higher than those in remission (DAS28 < 2.6) (36.45 ± 14.36 vs. 24.63 ± 8.81 ng/mL; P < 0.001). Our findings suggest that serum LRG could contribute to the inflammatory process independent of TNF-α and it may be a novel biomarker for assessing inflammatory activity in patients with RA.
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