Hydroquinone exposure worsens the symptomatology of rheumatoid arthritis

The genesis of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is complex and dependent on genetic background and exposure to environmental xenobiotic. Indeed, smoking is associated to developing and worsening pre-existing RA. Nevertheless, the mechanisms and cigarette compounds involved in the harmful processes have not been elucidated. Here, we investigated if the exposure to hydroquinone (HQ), an abundant pro-oxidative compound of cigarette and benzene metabolite, could worsen the ongoing RA. Hence, collagen-induced arthritis (CIA) was induced in male Wistar rats by s.c. injection of 400 lig (200 mu L) of bovine collagen type II emulsified in complete Freund's adjuvant on day 1, and a booster injection was performed on day 7. Exposures to nebulized HQ (25 ppm), saline solution or HQ vehicle solution (5% ethanol in saline) were carried out for 1 h, once a day, on days 21-27 after CIA induction. On day 27, animals were euthanized and samples were collected for further analyses. Exposure to HQ caused loss of weight, intensified paw edema, enhanced levels of tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) and anti-citrullinated protein antibody (ACPA) in the serum; augmented synoviocyte proliferation and influx of aril hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) positive cells into the synovial membrane, altered collagen fibre rearrangement in the synovia, and synoviocytes isolated from HQ exposed rats secreted higher levels of proinflammatory cytokines, TNF-alpha and interleukin-15. Associated, we point out HQ as an environmental pollutant that aggravates RA, suggesting its participation on worsening RA in smoking patients.
Keywords
Environmental toxicology;  Cigarette smoke;  Collagen-induced arthritis;  Aril hydrocarbon receptor;  Synovia

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Heluany CS, Kanda Kupa LV, Viana MN, Fernandes CM, Poliselli Farsky SH. Hydroquinone exposure worsens the symptomatology of rheumatoid arthritis. Chem.-Biol. Interact.. 2018 Aug;291:120-7. doi:10.1016/j.cbi.2018.06.016.
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