Inflammatory cell populations from synovial effusions or synovial villi in rheumatoid arthritis have been cultured in vitro. Prostaglandin productive capacity, measured by radioimmunoassay, showed the polymorphonuclear leucocyte rich populations from synovial effusions to be poor sources of PGE production whereas the synovial fragments produced substantial amounts of PGE activity. It is suggested that the macrophage is the major source of local prostaglandin formation both in gout and rheumatoid arthritis.
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