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Efficacy of rituximab in the treatment of pulmonary rheumatoid nodules: findings in 10 patients from the French AutoImmunity and Rituximab/Rheumatoid Arthritis registry (AIR/PR registry)
  1. Baptiste Glace1,
  2. Jacques-Eric Gottenberg2,
  3. Xavier Mariette3,
  4. Ravaud Philippe4,
  5. Bruno Pereira5,
  6. Thierry Lequerré6,
  7. Jean-Marie Berthelot7,
  8. Maxime Dougados8,
  9. Eric Toussirot9,
  10. Thao Pham10,
  11. Yannick Allanore11,
  12. Damien Loeuille12,
  13. Liana Euller-Ziegler13,
  14. Martin Soubrier1
  1. 1Department of Rheumatology, University Hospital, Clermont-Ferrand, France
  2. 2Department of Rheumatology, Strasbourg University Hospital, Strasbourg, France
  3. 3Department of Rheumatology, Hôpital Bicêtre, Kremlin Bicetre, France
  4. 4INSERM U738, Département d’Epidémiologie, Biostatistique et Recherche Clinique, Groupe Hospitalier Bichat-Claude Bernard Université Paris VII DRCI, Paris, France
  5. 5DRCI Biostatistical department, University Hospital, Clermont-Ferrand, France
  6. 6Department of Rheumatology, Rouen University Hospital, Rouen, France
  7. 7INSERM U957, University of Nantes, Nantes, France
  8. 8Department of Rheumatology, Hopital Cochin, Paris, France
  9. 9Department of Rheumatology, University Hospital Jean Minjoz, Besancon, France
  10. 10Department of Rheumatology Hopital la Conception, Marseille, France
  11. 11Department of Rheumatology A, Cochin Hospital, Paris Descartes University, Paris, France
  12. 12Department of Rheumatology, University hospital, Nancy, France
  13. 13Department of Rheumatology, University hospital, Nice, France
  1. Correspondence to Baptiste Glace, University hospital, Rheumatology, 58 rue Montalembert, Clermont-Ferrand 63000, France; bglace{at}hotmail.fr

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Pulmonary rheumatoid nodules (PRN) occur in 20%−25% of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients and can lead to complications.1 Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (leflunomide, methotrexate) and antitumour necrosis factor α (anti-TNFα) have been implicated in their development.2,,4 The immunopathological characteristics of PRN are quite distinct from those of subcutaneous nodules with the presence of B lymphocytes expressing CD20 in the periphery.5 We therefore decided to assess the efficacy of rituximab (RTX) in patients with PRN using data from the French AutoImmunity and Rituximab/Rheumatoid Arthritis registry.6 Of the 10 patients studied, all but one (n 8) were positive for rheumatoid factors and anticitrullinated protein antibodies (anti-CCP). Five patients had a history of smoking: two were active smokers (n 2, 3), and three past smokers (n 5, 7, 9). All patients had previously received anti-TNF …

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