Wednesday November 13, 2019

Gout May Not Increase the Risk of Fracture as Believed Earlier

Gout is the most common form of inflammatory arthritis, caused by the build-up of urate crystals in a joint.

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People with gout, a painful inflammatory arthritis, may not actually have an increased risk of fracture as earlier believed, show results of a new study.
Gout is the most common form of inflammatory arthritis, caused by the build-up of urate crystals in a joint. Pixabay

People with gout, a painful inflammatory arthritis, may not actually have an increased risk of fracture as earlier believed, show results of a new study.

The findings, published in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal), contrast with those of previous studies, which found higher risk of fracture in people with gout.

Gout is the most common form of inflammatory arthritis, caused by the build-up of urate crystals in a joint.

It can result in severe pain and swelling in joints, most often the base of the big toe but also in other joints.

Gout is the most common form of inflammatory arthritis, caused by the build-up of urate crystals in a joint.
It was believed that gout can increase the risk of fracture in body, Pixabay

To better understand the links between gout and fracture risk, the researchers from Keele University conducted a study in Britain using a large primary care database.

It included 31,781 patients with gout who were matched to 122,961 controls and followed them for between 6.8 and 13.6 years until the first diagnosis of a fracture.

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The rate of fracture was similar in people with and without gout, the findings showed.

In addition, medication to lower urate levels in people with gout did not appear to benefit or adversely affect the long-term risk of fractures.

“Our use of a nationally representative cohort should enable our study findings to be generalisable not only to the UK but also to other countries with similar health care systems,” said Zoe Paskins from Keele University. (IANS)

Next Story

ApoE: The Protein That Prevents Fractures From Healing in Older People

Researchers, including one of Indian-origin, have found a certain protein that is more prevalent in older people and which prevent fractured bones from healing

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fracture, bone, healing, protein, old people
After a few months of your arm or leg healing, there will be almost no cartilage anymore. And if you were to look at it five years out, there'd be no sign of an injury anymore. Pixabay

Researchers, including one of Indian-origin, have found a certain protein that is more prevalent in older people and which prevent fractured bones from healing.

According to the study published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation Insight, the research team confirmed that older people have more Apolipoprotein E or ApoE than younger people.

“When we decreased the protein level, ageing was reversed. Not only there was more bone and healing happened faster, but it was also structurally more sound,” said study senior author Gurpreet Baht, Assistant Professor at the Duke University.

They found that 75-85-year-olds had twice as much ApoE in their bloodstreams as 35-45-year-olds, then found the same was true for 24-month-old mice versus 4-month-old mice, which approximate the same human age ranges.

The researchers wanted to figure out if and how ApoE affects the multi-step process of bone healing.

When you break a bone, your body sends signals through the bloodstream to recruit cells to fix it, said the study.

Some of those recruits, specifically skeletal stem cells, build up cartilage as a temporary scaffolding to hold the fracture together.

fracture, bone, healing, protein, old people
A certain protein that is more prevalent in older people and which prevent fractured bones from healing. Pixabay

At last a different kind of cell eats up the cartilage scaffolds and osteoblasts fill those holes with bone.

“Over time, this cartilage will continue to be resorbed and osteoblasts will continue to deposit new bone.

“After a few months of your arm or leg healing, there will be almost no cartilage anymore. And if you were to look at it five years out, there’d be no sign of an injury anymore,” Baht explained.

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The researchers found that if they added ApoE to a petri dish with skeletal stem cells, fewer cells developed into osteoblasts and were worse at building bones.

Next, the researchers created an intervention by injecting a virus which keeps mice from making ApoE protein.

Circulating ApoE levels dropped by 75 per cent and the healed bones contained one and a half-times more strong, hard bone tissue than bones of untreated mice.

The researchers hope this discovery will lead to new treatments to help people heal after injuries or surgeries. (IANS)