Jennifer B Soep

Children's Hospital Colorado, Aurora, Colorado, United States

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Publications (9)40.45 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE: Participants in the Atherosclerosis Prevention in Paediatric Lupus Erythematosus (APPLE) trial were randomised to placebo or atorvastatin for 36 months. The primary endpoint, reduced carotid intima medial thickness (CIMT) progression, was not met but atorvastatin-treated participants showed a trend of slower CIMT progression. Post-hoc analyses were performed to assess subgroup benefit from atorvastatin therapy. METHODS: Subgroups were prespecified and defined by age (> or ≤15.5 years), systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) duration (> or ≤24 months), pubertal status (Tanner score ≥4 as post-pubertal or <4 as pre-pubertal), low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL) (≥ or <110 mg/dl) and high-sensitivity C reactive protein (hsCRP) (≥ or <1.5 mg/l). A combined subgroup (post-pubertal and hsCRP≥1.5 mg/l) was compared to all others. Longitudinal linear mixed-effects models were developed using 12 CIMT and other secondary APPLE outcomes (lipids, hsCRP, disease activity and damage, and quality of life). Three way interaction effects were assessed for models. RESULTS: Significant interaction effects with trends of less CIMT progression in atorvastatin-treated participants were observed in pubertal (3 CIMT segments), high hsCRP (2 CIMT segments), and the combined high hsCRP and pubertal group (5 CIMT segments). No significant treatment effect trends were observed across subgroups defined by age, SLE duration, LDL for CIMT or other outcome measures. CONCLUSIONS: Pubertal status and higher hsCRP were linked to lower CIMT progression in atorvastatin-treated subjects, with most consistent decreases in CIMT progression in the combined pubertal and high hsCRP group. While secondary analyses must be interpreted cautiously, results suggest further research is needed to determine whether pubertal lupus patients with high CRP benefit from statin therapy. CLINICALTRIALS.GOV IDENTIFIER:: NCT00065806.
    Annals of the rheumatic diseases 02/2013; · 8.11 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Statins reduce atherosclerosis and cardiovascular morbidity in the general population, but their efficacy and safety in children and adolescents with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) are unknown. This study was undertaken to determine the 3-year efficacy and safety of atorvastatin in preventing subclinical atherosclerosis progression in pediatric-onset SLE. A total of 221 participants with pediatric SLE (ages 10-21 years) from 21 North American sites were enrolled in the Atherosclerosis Prevention in Pediatric Lupus Erythematosus study, a randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial, between August 2003 and November 2006 with 36-month followup. Participants were randomized to receive atorvastatin (n=113) or placebo (n=108) at 10 or 20 mg/day depending on weight, in addition to usual care. The primary end point was progression of mean-mean common carotid intima-media thickening (CIMT) measured by ultrasound. Secondary end points included other segment/wall-specific CIMT measures, lipid profile, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP) level, and SLE disease activity and damage outcomes. Progression of mean-mean common CIMT did not differ significantly between treatment groups (0.0010 mm/year for atorvastatin versus 0.0024 mm/year for placebo; P=0.24). The atorvastatin group achieved lower hsCRP (P=0.04), total cholesterol (P<0.001), and low-density lipoprotein (P<0.001) levels compared with placebo. In the placebo group, CIMT progressed significantly across all CIMT outcomes (0.0023-0.0144 mm/year; P<0.05). Serious adverse events and critical safety measures did not differ between groups. Our results indicate that routine statin use over 3 years has no significant effect on subclinical atherosclerosis progression in young SLE patients; however, further analyses may suggest subgroups that would benefit from targeted statin therapy. Atorvastatin was well tolerated without safety concerns.
    Arthritis & Rheumatology 01/2012; 64(1):285-96. · 7.48 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To formulate consensus treatment plans (CTPs) for induction therapy of newly diagnosed proliferative lupus nephritis (LN) in juvenile systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). A structured consensus formation process was employed by the members of the Childhood Arthritis and Rheumatology Research Alliance after considering the existing medical evidence and current treatment approaches. After an initial Delphi survey (response rate = 70%), a 2-day consensus conference, and 2 followup Delphi surveys (response rates = 63-79%), consensus was achieved for a limited set of CTPs addressing the induction therapy of proliferative LN. These CTPs were developed for prototypical patients defined by eligibility characteristics, and included immunosuppressive therapy with either mycophenolic acid orally twice per day, or intravenous cyclophosphamide once per month at standardized dosages for 6 months. Additionally, the CTPs describe 3 options for standardized use of glucocorticoids, including a primarily oral, a mixed oral/intravenous, and a primarily intravenous regimen. There was consensus on measures of effectiveness and safety of the CTPs. The CTPs were well accepted by the pediatric rheumatology providers treating children with LN, and up to 300 children per year in North America are expected to be candidates for the treatment with the CTPs. CTPs for induction therapy of proliferative LN in juvenile SLE based on the available scientific evidence and pediatric rheumatology group experience have been developed. Consistent use of the CTPs may improve the prognosis of proliferative LN, and support the conduct of comparative effectiveness studies aimed at optimizing therapeutic strategies for proliferative LN in juvenile SLE.
    Arthritis care & research. 12/2011; 64(3):375-83.
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    ABSTRACT: As part of the Atherosclerosis Prevention in Pediatric Lupus Erythematosus (APPLE) Trial, a prospective multicenter cohort of 221 children and adolescents with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) (mean age 15.7 years, 83% female) underwent baseline measurement of markers of cardiovascular risk, including fasting levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL), low-density lipoprotein (LDL), triglycerides (TG), lipoprotein A (Lpa), homocysteine and high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP). A cross-sectional analysis of the baseline laboratory values and clinical characteristics of this cohort was performed. Univariable relationships between the cardiovascular markers of interest and clinical variables were assessed, followed by multivariable linear regression modeling. Mean levels of LDL, HDL, Lpa, TG, hs-CRP and homocysteine were in the normal or borderline ranges. In multivariable analysis, increased Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Disease Activity Index (SLEDAI), prednisone dose, and hypertension (HTN) were independently associated with higher LDL levels. Higher hs-CRP and creatinine clearance were independently related to lower HDL levels. Higher body mass index (BMI), prednisone dose, and homocysteine levels were independently associated with higher TG levels. Only Hispanic or non-White status predicted higher Lpa levels. Proteinuria, higher TG and lower creatinine clearance were independently associated with higher homocysteine levels, while use of multivitamin with folate predicted lower homocysteine levels. Higher BMI, lower HDL, and longer SLE disease duration, but not SLEDAI, were independently associated with higher hs-CRP levels. The R(2) for these models ranged from 7% to 23%. SLE disease activity as measured by the SLEDAI was associated only with higher LDL levels and not with hs-CRP. Markers of renal injury (HTN, proteinuria, and creatinine clearance) were independently associated with levels of LDL, HDL, and homocysteine, highlighting the importance of renal status in the cardiovascular health of children and adolescents with SLE. Future longitudinal analysis of the APPLE cohort is needed to further examine these relationships.
    Lupus 10/2010; 19(11):1315-25. · 2.78 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We investigated the etiology of acute hepatitis in three children with systemic Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (sJIA) taking Interleukin-1 receptor antagonist (IL1RA). Laboratory and clinical data for three children with sJIA diagnosed at ages 13 months to 8 years who developed acute hepatitis during treatment with IL1RA were reviewed for evidence of sJIA flare, infection, macrophage activation syndrome (MAS), malignancy, and drug reaction. In all patients, hepatitis persisted despite cessation of known hepatotoxic drugs and in absence of known infectious triggers, until discontinuation of IL1RA. Liver biopsies had mixed inflammatory infiltrates with associated hepatocellular injury suggestive of an exogenous trigger. At the time of hepatitis, laboratory data and liver biopsies were not characteristic of MAS. In two patients, transaminitis resolved within one week of discontinuing IL1RA, the third improved dramatically in one month. Although sJIA symptoms improved significantly on IL1RA, it appeared that IL1RA contributed to the development of acute hepatitis. Hepatitis possibly occurred as a result of an altered immune response to a typical childhood infection while on IL1RA. Alternatively, hepatitis could have represented an atypical presentation of MAS in patients with sJIA taking IL1RA. Further investigation is warranted to determine how anti-IL1 therapies alter immune responsiveness to exogenous triggers in patients with immune dysfunction such as sJIA. Our patients suggest that close monitoring for hepatic and other toxicities is indicated when treating with IL1RA.
    Pediatric Rheumatology 12/2009; 7:21. · 1.47 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To evaluate risk factors for subclinical atherosclerosis in a population of patients with pediatric systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). In a prospective multicenter study, a cohort of 221 patients underwent baseline measurements of carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT) as part of the Atherosclerosis Prevention in Pediatric Lupus Erythematosus (APPLE) trial. SLE disease measures, medications, and traditional risk factors for atherosclerosis were assessed. A standardized protocol was used to assess the thickness of the bilateral common carotid arteries and the mean maximal IMT of 12 segments. Univariable analysis identified potential associations with CIMT, which were examined in multivariable linear regression modeling. Based on the mean-mean common or the mean-max CIMT as the dependent variable, univariable analysis showed significant associations of the following variables with increased CIMT: increasing age, longer SLE duration, minority status, higher body mass index (BMI), male sex, increased creatinine clearance, higher lipoprotein(a) level, proteinuria, azathioprine treatment, and prednisone dose. In multivariable modeling, both azathioprine use (P=0.005 for the mean-mean model and P=0.102 for the mean-max model) and male sex (P<0.001) were associated with increases in the mean-max CIMT. A moderate dosage of prednisone (0.15-0.4 mg/kg/day) was associated with decreases in the mean-max CIMT (P=0.024), while high-dose and low-dose prednisone were associated with increases in the mean-mean common CIMT (P=0.021) and the mean-max CIMT (P=0.064), respectively. BMI (P<0.001) and creatinine clearance (P=0.031) remained associated with increased mean-mean common CIMT, while increasing age (P<0.001) and increasing lipoprotein(a) level (P=0.005) were associated with increased mean-max CIMT. Traditional as well as nontraditional risk factors were associated with increased CIMT in this cohort of patients in the APPLE trial. Azathioprine treatment was associated with increased CIMT. The relationship between CIMT and prednisone dose may not be linear.
    Arthritis & Rheumatology 04/2009; 60(5):1496-507. · 7.48 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Poor outcomes in systemic juvenile arthritis have been associated with persistent thrombocytosis, increased sedimentation rates, anemia, polyarthritis, and prolonged steroid use. Off-label treatment with recombinant interleukin-1 receptor antagonist therapy (anakinra) has become more common since reports of its association with reduced systemic symptoms and arthritis scores, improved laboratory parameters of inflammation, and decreased corticosteroid requirements. To examine the efficacy and safety of anakinra in a regional cohort of systemic juvenile arthritis patients. We performed a retrospective case series of systemic juvenile arthritis patients (n = 33) treated with anakinra at 3 Pediatric Rheumatology centers. The effect of anakinra on corticosteroid dose, sedimentation rate, platelet count, albumin, hemoglobin, arthritis joint counts, and height Z score was determined using the paired t test. We evaluated differences in change in these variables between patient groups within the sample determined by: age of onset, anakinra dose, and duration from diagnosis until anakinra treatment. Treatment was associated with decreases in corticosteroid dosage and sedimentation rate and increases in hemoglobin and albumin (P < 0.02). There were decreases in large joint arthritis counts (P < 0.04) but not small joint counts after 3 to 4 months. There were greater decreases in sedimentation rates from pre to post (1-2 months) in patients on high versus low dose anakinra (P < 0.001). Fever and rash, present in 7 cases before treatment, was resolved. Eight patients had periods of arthritis, 1 developed macrophage activation syndrome, and another Epstein Barr virus. Over half of patients reported localized pain or swelling at their injection site. Treatment with anakinra was associated with short-term improvements in large joint counts and laboratory parameters of active disease. Higher anakinra doses may be more efficacious in treating the systemic inflammatory response in systemic onset juvenile idiopathic arthritis patients. A subset of patients had periods of arthritis during treatment, and local side-effects were frequent. Our experience supports the continued use of interleukin-1 inhibition in systemic juvenile arthritis and the search for more effective and more tolerable forms of interleukin-1 inhibition.
    Journal of clinical rheumatology: practical reports on rheumatic & musculoskeletal diseases 04/2009; 15(4):161-4. · 1.19 Impact Factor
  • Tamara D Simon, Jennifer B Soep, J Roger Hollister
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    ABSTRACT: Pernio, or chilblains, is a localized inflammatory lesion of the skin resulting from an abnormal response to cold. Five cases were seen among adolescent female patients who presented to our rheumatology service in a pediatric tertiary care center in the winter of 2003 to 2004. All 5 patients were thin (BMI of <25th percentile) and had either toes or fingers that were affected. For each, laboratory evaluation results were unremarkable, including negative antinuclear antibody profile results. Symptomatic treatment, with or without medication, was recommended. Pernio most commonly occurs among young women but may occur among older individuals or among children. Because pernio develops among susceptible individuals who are exposed to nonfreezing cold, the lesions usually begin in the fall or winter and disappear in the spring or early summer. Acute pernio may develop 12 to 24 hours after exposure to the cold. Single or multiple erythematous, purplish, edematous lesions appear, accompanied by intense pain, itching, or burning. Chronic pernio occurs with repeated exposure to the cold and the persistence of lesions. In an acute exacerbation, the major differential diagnosis alternative would be Raynaud's phenomenon, which consists of sharply demarcated cutaneous pallor and cyanosis, followed by erythema, of far shorter duration (hours rather than days). Frostbite is freezing of tissue, with resultant tissue necrosis. Several conditions have been described as predisposing subjects to pernio, including the presence of cryoproteins, excessive cold exposure, and anorexia nervosa among children and systemic lupus erythematosus and antiphospholipid antibodies among adults. It is important, therefore, when evaluating a patient with pernio, both to exclude an underlying diagnosis and to determine whether additional testing is necessary. The lesions of acute pernio are usually self-limited but may lead to recurrent disease. The involved limb should be cleaned and dried, and rewarming should occur. Prevention is the best form of therapy, and cold exposure should be minimized after an initial insult. The prognosis for properly treated pernio is excellent. Nifedipine, which produces vasodilation, has been demonstrated to be effective in reducing pain, facilitating healing, and preventing new lesions of pernio. We think that the 5 cases seen in our rheumatology clinic represent an increase, compared with prior years; the dermatology clinic at the University of Colorado reported a series of 8 children treated during a 10-year period. The reasons for the possible increase are likely multifactorial, with cold climate, a vulnerable population with thin body habitus, and cold exposure all being contributing causes. Of note, the quality of cold in Colorado is quite dry; however, the winter of 2003 to 2004 was not particularly colder or drier than prior years. All patients were very thin, and thin body habitus may be associated with increased cutaneous vasoreactivity. It is also unclear how these cases of pernio may reflect that winter's fashion trends (2 patients reported wearing sandals in winter). General pediatricians, particularly those who practice in colder climates, should be aware of the presentation and treatment of pernio in childhood.
    PEDIATRICS 10/2005; 116(3):e472-5. · 4.47 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To characterize atherosclerotic risk factors and endothelial function in pediatric-onset systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). Lipoproteins, oxidized state, and autoantibodies to oxidized low-density lipoprotein (Ox-LDL) were assessed. Endothelial function was evaluated using brachial artery reactivity. Thirty-three SLE patients and 30 controls were studied. SLE subjects had significantly decreased mean high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol (41 mg/dl versus 51 mg/dl; P = 0.002) and apolipoprotein A-I (97 mg/dl versus 199 mg/dl; P = 0.0004). There was no difference between groups in markers of oxidized state (including nitric oxide metabolites, isoprostanes, and Ox-LDL) or in endothelial function. However, SLE subjects had increased median anti-Ox-LDL IgG (2,480 relative light units [RLU] versus 1,567 RLU; P = 0.0007) and IgG immune complexes with LDL (4,222 RLU versus 2,868 RLU; P = 0.002). Pediatric SLE patients had significantly decreased levels of HDL cholesterol and apolipoprotein A-I and elevated titers of autoantibodies to Ox-LDL. Despite these atherosclerotic risk factors, SLE patients had normal measures of oxidized state and endothelial function.
    Arthritis & Rheumatology 07/2004; 51(3):451-7. · 7.48 Impact Factor