A nephelometric assay of concanavalin-A binding of serum acute phase proteins (con-A binding) has been used in cross-sectional and sequential studies of disease activity in rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Con-A binding correlated well with blood viscosity, C-reactive protein, and other individual acute phase reactants in patients with active RA. Twenty-four patients were treated for 6 months with D-penicillamine and assessed clinically and seriologically. Clinical improvement was accompanied by significant falls in both C-reactive protein and con-A binding, although the serological changes did not always occur in parallel in individual patients. The advantages of this simple, cheap assay of acute phase proteins are discussed.
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