H Weedon

Repatriation General Hospital, Tarndarnya, South Australia, Australia

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Publications (34)173.67 Total impact

  • Australian Rheumatology Association (ARA) Annual Scientific Meeting 2014, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia; 05/2014
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    ABSTRACT: In the spondyloarthropathies, the underlying molecular and cellular pathways driving disease are poorly understood. By undertaking a study in knee synovial biopsies from spondyloarthropathy (SpA) and ankylosing spondylitis (AS) patients we aimed to elucidate dysregulated genes and pathways. RNA was extracted from six SpA, two AS, three osteoarthritis (OA) and four normal control knee synovial biopsies. Whole genome expression profiling was undertaken using the Illumina DASL system, which assays 24000 cDNA probes. Differentially expressed candidate genes were then validated using quantitative PCR and immunohistochemistry. Four hundred and sixteen differentially expressed genes were identified that clearly delineated between AS/SpA and control groups. Pathway analysis showed altered gene-expression in oxidoreductase activity, B-cell associated, matrix catabolic, and metabolic pathways. Altered "myogene" profiling was also identified. The inflammatory mediator, MMP3, was strongly upregulated (5-fold) in AS/SpA samples and the Wnt pathway inhibitors DKK3 (2.7-fold) and Kremen1 (1.5-fold) were downregulated. Altered expression profiling in SpA and AS samples demonstrates that disease pathogenesis is associated with both systemic inflammation as well as local tissue alterations that may underlie tissue damaging modelling and remodelling outcomes. This supports the hypothesis that initial systemic inflammation in spondyloarthropathies transfers to and persists in the local joint environment, and might subsequently mediate changes in genes directly involved in the destructive tissue remodelling.
    BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 12/2013; 14(1):354. · 1.88 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is a common inflammatory arthritis affecting primarily the axial skeleton. IL23R is genetically associated with AS. This study was undertaken to investigate and characterize the role of interleukin-23 (IL-23) signaling in AS pathogenesis. The study population consisted of patients with active AS (n = 17), patients with psoriatic arthritis (n = 8), patients with rheumatoid arthritis, (n = 9), and healthy subjects (n = 20). IL-23 receptor (IL-23R) expression in T cells was determined in each subject group, and expression levels were compared. The proportion of IL-23R-expressing T cells in the periphery was 2-fold higher in AS patients than in healthy controls, specifically driven by a 3-fold increase in IL-23R-positive γ/δ T cells in AS patients. The proportions of CD4+ and CD8+ cells that were positive for IL-17 were unchanged. This increased IL-23R expression on γ/δ T cells was also associated with enhanced IL-17 secretion, with no observable IL-17 production from IL-23R-negative γ/δ T cells in AS patients. Furthermore, γ/δ T cells from AS patients were heavily skewed toward IL-17 production in response to stimulation with IL-23 and/or anti-CD3/CD28. Recently, mouse models have shown IL-17-secreting γ/δ T cells to be pathogenic in infection and autoimmunity. Our data provide the first description of a potentially pathogenic role of these cells in a human autoimmune disease. Since IL-23 is a maturation and growth factor for IL-17-producing cells, increased IL-23R expression may regulate the function of this putative pathogenic γ/δ T cell population.
    Arthritis & Rheumatology 12/2011; 64(5):1420-9. · 7.48 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: TNF-like weak inducer of apoptosis (TWEAK) has been proposed as a mediator of inflammation and bone erosion in rheumatoid arthritis (RA). This study aimed to investigate TWEAK and TWEAK receptor (Fn14) expression in synovial tissue from patients with active and inactive rheumatoid arthritis (RA), osteoarthritis (OA) and normal controls and assess soluble (s)TWEAK levels in the synovial fluids from patients with active RA and OA. Effects of sTWEAK on osteoclasts and osteoblasts were investigated in vitro. TWEAK and Fn14 expression were detected in synovial tissues by immunohistochemistry (IHC). Selected tissues were dual labelled with antibodies specific for TWEAK and lineage-selective cell surface markers CD68, Tryptase G, CD22 and CD38. TWEAK mRNA expression was examined in human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) sorted on the basis of their expression of CD22. sTWEAK was detected in synovial fluid from OA and RA patients by ELISA. The effect of sTWEAK on PBMC and RAW 264.7 osteoclastogenesis was examined. The effect of sTWEAK on cell surface receptor activator of NF Kappa B Ligand (RANKL) expression by human osteoblasts was determined by flow cytometry. TWEAK and Fn14 expression were significantly higher in synovial tissue from all patient groups compared to the synovial tissue from control subjects (P < 0.05). TWEAK was significantly higher in active compared with inactive RA tissues (P < 0.05). TWEAK expression co-localised with a subset of CD38+ plasma cells and with CD22+ B-lymphocytes in RA tissues. Abundant TWEAK mRNA expression was detected in normal human CD22+ B cells. Higher levels of sTWEAK were observed in synovial fluids isolated from active RA compared with OA patients. sTWEAK did not stimulate osteoclast formation directly from PBMC, however, sTWEAK induced the surface expression of RANKL by human immature, STRO-1+ osteoblasts. The expression of TWEAK by CD22+ B cells and CD38+ plasma cells in RA synovium represents a novel potential pathogenic pathway. High levels of sTWEAK in active RA synovial fluid and of TWEAK and Fn14 in active RA tissue, together with the effect of TWEAK to induce osteoblastic RANKL expression, is consistent with TWEAK/Fn14 signalling being important in the pathogenesis of inflammation and bone erosion in RA.
    Arthritis research & therapy 03/2011; 13(2):R51. · 4.27 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Aortic valve stenosis (AVS) is associated with significant cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. To date, no therapeutic modality has been shown to be effective in retarding AVS progression. We evaluated the effect of angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibition with ramipril on disease progression in a recently developed rabbit model of AVS. The effects of 8 weeks of treatment with either vitamin D₂ at 25,000 IU for 4 days a week alone or in combination with ramipril (0.5 mg·kg⁻¹) on aortic valve structure and function were examined in New Zealand white rabbits. Echocardiographic aortic valve backscatter (AV(BS)) and aortic valve:outflow tract flow velocity ratio were utilized to quantify changes in valve structure and function. Treatment with ramipril significantly reduced AV(BS) and improved aortic valve :outflow tract flow velocity ratio. The intravalvular content of the pro-oxidant thioredoxin-interacting protein was decreased significantly with ramipril treatment. Endothelial function, as measured by asymmetric dimethylarginine concentrations and vascular responses to ACh, was improved significantly with ramipril treatment. Ramipril retards the development of AVS, reduces valvular thioredoxin-interacting protein accumulation and limits endothelial dysfunction in this animal model. These findings provide important insights into the mechanisms of AVS development and an impetus for future human studies of AVS retardation using an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor.
    British Journal of Pharmacology 10/2010; 162(3):722-32. · 5.07 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: RA is characterized at the synovial tissue level by synovial lining hyperplasia, angiogenesis and mononuclear cell infiltrates. A failure of apoptotic pathways may explain these pathological changes in RA synovial tissue. This study aims to demonstrate the presence of initiators and inhibitors of apoptosis in RA synovial tissue and the effect of treatment with DMARDs on apoptotic pathways in RA. Synovial biopsy specimens were obtained at arthroscopy from 16 RA patients before and at 3- or 6-month intervals after commencing treatment with a DMARD. Apoptosis (by the terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase mediated dUTP nick end labelling method and polyADP-ribose polymerase staining), proteins regulating apoptosis [Fas, FADD-like IL1b converting enzyme inhibitory protein (FLIP), Bcl-2, Survivin and X-linked inhibitor of apoptosis protein (XIAP)] and the presence of activated caspases (caspases 3 and 8) were detected by immunohistochemistry and quantified using image analysis and semiquantitative techniques. Fifteen patients responded to treatment, with an ACR response of > or =20%, 13 achieving an ACR response of > or =50% and 3 achieving an ACR remission. There was a significant reduction in SM macrophages and memory T cells, with an increase in fibroblast-like synovial lining cells following DMARD treatment. Apoptosis was not detected in the inflamed synovial tissue of RA patients before starting treatment, despite evidence of caspase activation, but was detectable after successful treatment with DMARDs. Inhibitors of activated caspases (FLIP, Survivin and XIAP) were detected in RA synovial tissue and were down-modulated with successful DMARD treatment. Apoptotic pathways are defective in RA synovial tissue from patients with active disease, despite the presence of activated caspases, possibly due to the abundant expression of inhibitors of the caspase pathway in RA synovial tissue. DMARD treatment can modulate apoptosis in the RA SM, which may lead to restoration of the SM architecture towards that of normal synovial tissue.
    Rheumatology (Oxford, England) 02/2010; 49(5):862-75. · 4.24 Impact Factor
  • Osteoarthritis and Cartilage 01/2010; 18. · 4.26 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Tumour necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) is a tumour necrosis factor (TNF) family member capable of inducing apoptosis in many cell types. Using immunohistochemistry, terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase biotin-dUTP nick end labelling (TUNEL) and real-time PCR we investigated the expression of TRAIL, TRAIL receptors and several key molecules of the intracellular apoptotic pathway in human synovial tissues from various types of arthritis and normal controls. Synovial tissues from patients with active rheumatoid arthritis (RA), inactive RA, osteoarthritis (OA) or spondyloarthritis (SpA) and normal individuals were studied. Significantly higher levels of TRAIL, TRAIL R1, TRAIL R2 and TRAIL R4 were observed in synovial tissues from patients with active RA compared with normal controls (p < 0.05). TRAIL, TRAIL R1 and TRAIL R4 were expressed by many of the cells expressing CD68 (macrophages). Lower levels of TUNEL but higher levels of cleaved caspase-3 staining were detected in tissue from active RA compared with inactive RA patients (p < 0.05). Higher levels of survivin and x-linked inhibitor of apoptosis protein (xIAP) were expressed in active RA synovial tissues compared with inactive RA observed at both the protein and mRNA levels. This study indicates that the induction of apoptosis in active RA synovial tissues is inhibited despite stimulation of the intracellular pathway(s) that lead to apoptosis. This inhibition of apoptosis was observed downstream of caspase-3 and may involve the caspase-3 inhibitors, survivin and xIAP.
    Arthritis research & therapy 02/2009; 11(1):R13. · 4.27 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To demonstrate the effect of treatment with disease-modifying agents on the expression of osteoprotegerin (OPG) and RANKL in the synovial tissue from rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients and to correlate these changes with radiologic damage measured on sequential radiographs of the hands and feet. Synovial biopsy specimens were obtained at arthroscopy from 25 patients with active RA (16 of whom had a disease duration <12 months) before and at 3-6-month intervals after starting treatment with a disease-modifying agent. Immunohistologic analysis was performed using monoclonal antibodies to detect OPG and RANKL expression, with staining quantitated using computer-assisted image analysis and semiquantitative analysis techniques. Serial radiographs of the hands and feet were analyzed independently by 2 radiologists and a rheumatologist using the van der Heide modification of the Sharp scoring method. Thirteen patients achieved a low disease state as defined by a disease activity score <2.6 while 19 patients achieved an American College of Rheumatology response >20% after disease-modifying antirheumatic drug (DMARD) treatment. Successful DMARD treatment resulted in an increase in OPG expression and a decrease in RANKL expression at the synovial tissue level, which correlated with a reduction in erosion scores measured on annual radiographs of the hands and feet. Successful treatment-induced modulation of OPG and RANKL expression at the synovial tissue level, resulting in a reduction in the RANKL:OPG ratio, is likely to have a significant impact on osteoclast formation and joint damage in patients with active RA.
    Arthritis & Rheumatology 08/2008; 59(7):911-20. · 7.48 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Understanding of the pathophysiology of aortic valve stenosis (AVS) and finding potentially effective treatments are impeded by the lack of suitable AVS animal models. A previous study demonstrated the development of AVS in rabbits with vitamin D(2) and cholesterol supplementation without any hemodynamic changes in the cholesterol supplemented group alone. The current study aimed to determine whether AVS develops in an animal model with vitamin D(2) supplementation alone, and to explore pathophysiological mechanisms underlying this process. The effects of 8 weeks' treatment with vitamin D(2) alone (n=8) at 25,000 IU/4 days weekly on aortic valve structure and function were examined in male New Zealand white rabbits. Echocardiographic aortic valve backscatter (AV(BS)), transvalvular velocity, and transvalvular pressure gradient were utilized to quantitate changes in valve structure and function. Valvular histology/immunochemistry and function were examined after 8 weeks. Changes in valves were compared with those in endothelial function and in valvular measurement of thioredoxin-interacting protein (TXNIP), a marker/mediator of reactive oxygen species-induced oxidative stress. Vitamin D(2) treated rabbits developed AVS with increased AV(BS) (17.6+/-1.4 dB vs 6.7+/-0.8 dB, P<0.0001), increased transvalvular velocity and transvalvular pressure gradient (both P<0.01 via 2-way ANOVA) compared to the control group. There was associated valve calcification, lipid deposition and macrophage infiltration. Endothelial function was markedly impaired, and intravalvular TXNIP concentration increased. In this model, vitamin D(2) induces the development of AVS with histological features similar to those of early AVS in humans and associated endothelial dysfunction/redox stress. AVS development may result from the loss of nitric oxide suppression of TXNIP expression.
    European Journal of Pharmacology 06/2008; 590(1-3):290-6. · 2.59 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To demonstrate the efficacy of intra-articular infliximab in a patient with a persistent monarthritis who had previously had two arthroscopic synovectomies with limited success, and to determine the effect of intra-articular infliximab on synovial membrane pathology Arthroscopic synovial biopsy specimens were collected before and after treatment with intra-articular infliximab. The synovial tissue was stained for a range of inflammatory cell subsets, cell adhesion molecules and cytokines using immunohistochemical techniques and quantified using digital image analysis and a semiquantitative scoring method. Clinical improvement in the knee synovitis was seen after the first two intra-articular infliximab treatments, with a sustained clinical remission lasting for more than 12 months after the third treatment. Significant changes in cellular infiltration and expression of cytokines and cell adhesion molecules occurred as a result of treatment with intra-articular infliximab, with a reduction in some but not all cells in the inflammatory infiltrate, as well as a reduction in the expression of cell adhesion molecules (intercellular adhesion molecule-1 and vascular adhesion molecule-1) and production of cytokines (interleukin 1beta and tumour necrosis factor alpha). Intra-articular infliximab administration is a viable treatment for a persistent monarthritis resistant to other treatment options and can successfully modulate the inflammatory milieu within the synovial membrane.
    Annals of the rheumatic diseases 05/2008; 67(9):1339-42. · 8.11 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To characterise the phenotype of the putative dendritic cells strongly expressing Jak3 and STAT4, which have been previously identified in the synovial tissue of patients with active rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Synovial biopsy specimens were obtained at arthroscopy from 30 patients with active RA (42 synovial biopsies). Immunohistological analysis was performed using monoclonal antibodies to detect dendritic cell subsets, including activation markers and cytokines relevant to dendritic cell function. Co-localisation of cell surface markers and cytokines was assessed primarily using sequential sections, with results confirmed by dual immunohistochemistry and immunofluorescence with confocal microscopy. The dendritic cells identified in RA synovial tissue that strongly express Jak3 also strongly express STAT4 and STAT 6 and are correlated with the presence of serum rheumatoid factor. These cells are not confined to a single dendritic cell subset, with cells having phenotypes consistent with both myeloid- and plasmacytoid-type dendritic cells. The activation status of these dendritic cells suggests that they are maturing or mature dendritic cells. These dendritic cells produce IL12 as well as interferon alpha and gamma. The close correlation of these dendritic cells with the presence of serum rheumatoid factor, a prognostic factor for worse disease outcome, and the strong expression by these cells of components of the Jak/STAT transcription factor pathway suggest a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of RA.
    Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases 09/2007; 66(8):992-9. · 9.11 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The transforming growth factor beta superfamily member macrophage inhibitory cytokine 1 (MIC-1) is expressed upon macrophage activation, regulated by the p53 pathway, and linked to clinical events in atherosclerosis and cancer. Since rheumatoid arthritis (RA) shares similar etiopathologic mechanisms with the above diseases, we sought to determine the clinical utility of determining MIC-1 serum levels and MIC-1 genotype in the management of RA. Ninety-one RA patients were recruited. Serum was collected from 83 of these patients and synovial biopsy samples were collected from the remaining 8 patients. Of the 83 patients from whom serum was collected, 61 were treated on an outpatient basis (defined as having nonsevere disease), and 22 patients went on to undergo hemopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) (defined as having severe disease). Serum levels of MIC-1 were higher in RA patients and reflected disease severity independently of classic disease markers. MIC-1 was detected in rheumatoid synovial specimens, and allelic variation of MIC-1 was associated with earlier erosive disease and severe treatment-resistant chronic RA. Additionally, algorithms including serum and/or allelic variation in MIC-1 predicted response to HSCT, the presence of severe disease, and joint erosions. Determination of serum levels of MIC-1 and MIC-1 genotype may be clinically useful in the management of RA as well as in selection of patients for HSCT, since they predict disease course and response to therapy. The data indicate a potential role for MIC-1 in RA pathogenesis. These results warrant larger prospective studies to fully delineate and confirm a role for MIC-1 genotyping and serum estimation in patient selection for HSCT and in the management of RA.
    Arthritis & Rheumatology 04/2007; 56(3):753-64. · 7.48 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Modulation of Jak-STAT signalling may provide an effective therapeutic strategy in inflammatory arthritis (IA). To examine the effect of successful disease-modifying antirheumatic drug (DMARD) treatment on the expression of Jak-STAT in a cohort of patients with active rheumatoid arthritis. Synovial tissue biopsy specimens from 16 patients with active rheumatoid arthritis, taken before and after initiation of DMARD treatment, were examined for the presence of janus kinase (Jak)3, signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT)1, STAT4 and STAT6 expression using immunohistochemistry. Successful treatment with DMARDs results in reduction in STAT1 expression in the lining, and STAT1 and STAT6 in the sublining of rheumatoid arthritis synovial tissue. Although the overall expression of STAT4 and Jak3 was not significantly altered by DMARD treatment, there was a significant reduction in the expression of the STAT4 and Jak3 bright cells, thought to be an activated dendritic cell subpopulation. Results show that Jak3, STAT1, STAT4 expression and STAT6 sublining expression decrease in response to successful treatment of rheumatoid arthritis with standard DMARDs. Therefore, altering the expression of these pathways may represent an alternative treatment option, either through promoting up-regulation of inhibitory pathways, or suppressing inflammatory paths.
    Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases 01/2007; 65(12):1558-64. · 9.11 Impact Factor
  • Heart Lung and Circulation - HEART LUNG CIRC. 01/2007; 16.
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    ABSTRACT: Modulation of Jak-STAT signalling may provide an effective therapeutic strategy in inflammatory arthritis. To document Jak-STAT expression in a cohort of patients with active rheumatoid arthritis (RA), spondyloarthritis (SpA), and osteoarthritis (OA) and compare these subsets with normal synovial tissue. Synovial tissue biopsy specimens from patients with RA, OA, and SpA and histologically normal tissue (n = 10 in each arthritis group) were examined for the presence of Jak3, STAT1, STAT4, and STAT6 expression using immunohistochemistry. Phenotyping was performed using immunohistochemistry and immunofluorescence. Clinical and serological characteristics of patients with RA expressing Jak3-STAT4 were assessed. STAT1, STAT4, and Jak3 protein expression was generally increased in inflammatory arthritis. In contrast, STAT6 expression was relatively heterogeneous. A subpopulation of CD1a positive dendritic cells unique to seropositive patients with RA was detected. These cells showed intense protein expression for Jak3, STAT4, and STAT6. CD1a positive dendritic cells intensely express Jak3, STAT4, and STAT6 in seropositive RA tissue and may be an alternative marker for dendritic cells in their early stages of activation as well as providing a tool for identifying RA at the level of the synovium. Jak3 inhibition may be a potential therapeutic target to prevent dendritic cell maturation in RA. STAT1 expression is increased in inflammatory arthritis, suggesting that its pro-apoptotic and anti-inflammatory effects cannot effectively counteract inflammation. STAT6 expression is heterogeneous in synovium, suggesting a possible homoeostatic role in addition to any anti-inflammatory effects.
    Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases 03/2006; 65(2):149-56. · 9.11 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To determine immunohistological markers in synovial tissue of patients with early rheumatoid arthritis (RA) which are associated with unfavourable disease outcome. Synovial tissue was obtained from 36 patients with RA within 1 year after the initial symptoms and before starting disease modifying antirheumatic drug treatment. Clinical, laboratory, and radiological assessments (Larsen score) were performed at the time of the biopsy and at the end of follow up (mean 58 months, range 38-72). Immunohistological analysis was performed to detect T cells, B cells, plasma cells, fibroblast-like synoviocytes (FLS), macrophages, and granzyme B+ cytotoxic cells. The sections were evaluated by digital image analysis. Patients were divided into two groups based upon the radiological progression per year of follow up: group I with mild progression (n = 20; Larsen <2 points/year); group II with more severe progression (n = 16; Larsen > or =2 points/year). Regression analysis with a univariate model showed that the numbers of granzyme B+ cytotoxic cells (relative risk (RR) = 12, p = 0.003), T cells (RR = 11, p = 0.013), and FLS (RR = 10, p = 0.020) discriminated between groups I and II. A multivariate model demonstrated that the numbers of T cells (RR = 1.2, p = 0.015) and FLS (RR = 1.4, p = 0.013) were independent discriminators between groups I and II. The numbers of granzyme B+ cytotoxic cells, T cells, and FLS in synovial tissue of patients with RA are related to the severity of joint damage. The data suggest a pathogenetic role for these cells in the process of joint damage.
    Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases 05/2004; 63(5):483-8. · 9.11 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Aseptic bone loss adjacent to orthopedic joint implants is a common cause of joint implant failure in humans. This study investigates the expression of key regulators of osteoclast formation, receptor activator NFkappaB (RANK), Receptor activator of NFkappaB ligand (RANKL) and osteoprotegerin (OPG), in the peri-implant tissues of patients with osteolysis compared with levels in synovial tissues from osteoarthritic and healthy subjects. Immunohistochemical studies demonstrated that significantly higher levels of RANKL protein (p<0.05) were found in the peri-implant tissues of patients with implant failure than in similar tissues from osteoarthritic and healthy subjects. In contrast, OPG protein levels were similar in all tissues. RANKL, expressed as mRNA and protein, was predominantly associated with cells containing wear particles. Dual labeling studies showed that the cells expressing RANKL protein were macrophages. In situ hybridization studies confirmed that mRNA encoding for these proteins is also expressed by cells in the peri-implant tissues. In addition, RANK mRNA was expressed in cells that contained wear particles. These findings show that abnormally high levels of RANKL are expressed in peri-implant tissues of patients with prosthetic loosening and that these abnormal levels of RANKL may significantly contribute to aseptic implant loosening.
    Biomaterials 02/2004; 25(4):565-73. · 8.31 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To assess the interpatient, interbiopsy, and intrabiopsy variability of receptor activator of nuclear factor kB ligand (RANKL) and osteoprotegerin (OPG) immunostaining within synovial tissue from rheumatoid knee joints with active synovitis, using digital image analysis. Synovial biopsy specimens were obtained from patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and active synovitis. Immunohistologic analysis was performed on frozen synovial tissue biopsy specimens from 6 patients using a monoclonal antibody (Mab) to detect RANKL (626) or OPG (805 or 8051). Patients with a minimum of 4 synovial biopsies were included in the study. Sections were evaluated by computer assisted image analysis to assess between-patient, between-biopsy, and intra-biopsy variability of OPG and RANKL protein expression. The study was designed to deliberately maximize the variability. Computerized image analysis of staining with Mab to RANKL and OPG revealed variance for each antibody across the 3 components of the total variability. Our study shows that variability in synovial immunostaining of RANKL and OPG protein is a significant and complex problem. We discuss methods to reduce this variability and suggest that the auspices of OMERACT may be employed to advance the study of synovium in collaborative international studies.
    The Journal of Rheumatology 12/2003; 30(11):2319-24. · 3.26 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This study investigated the expression of key mediators that regulate differentiation of osteoclasts, receptor activator of nuclear factor kappaB ligand (RANKL), and its natural inhibitor, osteoprotegerin (OPG), in periodontitis. We aimed to compare the levels of the RANKL and OPG in the granulomatous tissue adjacent to areas of alveolar bone loss from patients with periodontitis to that present in tissue from patients without periodontitis. In addition, we aimed to determine the types of cells expressing these factors in these tissues and to demonstrate the expression of the osteoclastic markers, RANK and tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase (TRAP), in periodontitis. Frozen biopsy specimens were analysed using specific monoclonal antibodies and were evaluated by semiquantitative analysis and digital image analysis to compare levels of RANKL and OPG protein expression. Double labelling of frozen sections with antibodies to different cell lineage specific markers was used to determine the types of cells expressing these proteins. In situ hybridization was used to detect cells expressing RANK mRNA. Semiquantitative image analysis demonstrated that significantly higher levels of RANKL protein (P < 0.05) were expressed in the periodontitis tissue. Conversely, OPG protein was significantly lower (P < 0.05) in the periodontitis tissues. RANKL protein was associated with lymphocytes and macrophages. OPG protein was associated with endothelial cells in both tissues. Many leukocytes expressing RANK mRNA and TRAP were observed in periodontitis tissues. The change in the levels of these key regulators of osteoclast differentiation may play a major role in the bone loss seen in periodontitis.
    Journal of Periodontal Research 09/2003; 38(4):380-7. · 1.99 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

1k Citations
173.67 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2001–2011
    • Repatriation General Hospital
      Tarndarnya, South Australia, Australia
    • Flinders Medical Centre
      Tarndarnya, South Australia, Australia
  • 2008–2010
    • The Queen Elizabeth Hospital
      • Department of Cardiology
      Tarndarnya, South Australia, Australia
    • Flinders University
      • Department of Rheumatology
      Tarndarnya, South Australia, Australia
  • 2001–2004
    • Academisch Medisch Centrum Universiteit van Amsterdam
      • Department of Clinical Immunology and Rheumatology
      Amsterdam, North Holland, Netherlands
  • 2002
    • Monash University (Australia)
      • Department of Medicine
      Melbourne, Victoria, Australia