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16 February 2015 : Clinical Research  

Vincristine-Cyclophosphamide Combination Therapy Positively Affects T-Cell Subset Distribution in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Patients

Junwei ChenADE, Lijuan DingBC, Wu MengCF, Jinhua YangBG, Chenglan YanBDF, Jianfang XieCDF, Luo JingBD, Xiaofeng LiBE, Zili FuAE

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.893271

Med Sci Monit 2015; 21:505-510

Abstract

BACKGROUND: This study aimed to analyze the T-cell subset distribution in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) patients and determine whether vincristine-cyclophosphamide combination therapy can positively affect their T-cell subset distribution to keep the disease in remission.

MATERIAL AND METHODS: Thirteen SLE patients with ‘low activity’ (SLE Disease Activity Index (SLEDAI)≤9), 17 SLE patients with ‘high activity’ (SLEDAI>9), and 15 healthy controls were recruited. SLE patients were treated with vincristine-cyclophosphamide combination therapy. CD3+, CD4+, and CD8+ T-cell percentages were analyzed by flow cytometry at baseline, 3 months, 6 months, 12–24 months, and >24 months.

RESULTS: Significantly negative correlations were observed between the CD3+ and CD4+ T-cell percentages and SLEDAI scores at baseline (r=–0.471, P=0.015; r=–0.473, P=0.015, respectively). A significantly positive correlation was observed between CD4+ T-cell percentage and the complement component C3 at baseline (r=0.612, P=0.002). After 3 months of combination therapy, the CD3+ and CD4+ T-cell percentages were significantly higher than the high activity baseline (P<0.01, P<0.05, respectively). After 6 months, the CD3+, CD4+, and CD8+ T-cell percentages were all significantly higher than the high activity baseline (P<0.01, P<0.05, P<0.05, respectively).

CONCLUSIONS: T-cell subset distributions vary across different levels of SLE disease activity with higher CD3+ T-cell and CD4+ Th cell percentages favoring lower SLE activity. As CD3+ T-cell and CD4+ Th cell percentages negatively correlate with SLEDAI, vincristine-cyclophosphamide combination therapy appears to positively affect the T-cell subset distribution in SLE patients to keep the disease in remission by increasing their CD3+ T-cell and CD4+ Th cell percentages.

Keywords: Cyclophosphamide - therapeutic use, Drug Therapy, Combination, Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic - immunology, T-Lymphocyte Subsets - drug effects, Time Factors, Vincristine - therapeutic use

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Medical Science Monitor eISSN: 1643-3750
Medical Science Monitor eISSN: 1643-3750