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Statin therapy might be beneficial for patients with ankylosing spondylitis
  1. J C van Denderen1,
  2. M J L Peters2,
  3. V P van Halm2,
  4. I E van der Horst-Bruinsma2,
  5. B A C Dijkmans2,
  6. M T Nurmohamed1
  1. 1Department of Rheumatology, Jan van Breemen Institute, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  2. 2Department of Rheumatology, VU University Medical Centre, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  1. Correspondence to:
    Dr M T Nurmohamed
    Department of Rheumatology, VU University Medical Centre, Room 4A40, PO Box 7057, 1007 MB Amsterdam, The Netherlands; mt.nurmohamed{at}

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Therapeutic options for patients with the chronic inflammatory disease ankylosing spondylitis (AS) are limited. Treatment was, until recently, mainly based on non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and physical therapy. The efficacy of disease modifying antirheumatic drugs, such as sulfasalazine and methotrexate, is less beneficial in AS than in other rheumatic diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis.1 Recently, tumour necrosis factor α blocking agents, have been proved to be very effective in a high proportion of patients with AS. However, these agents are expensive and their use is sometimes accompanied by severe adverse events, as opportunistic infections. Moreover, tumour necrosis factor α blocking agents are not effective in about 30% of patients.2 Hence, there is a continuing need for alternative therapeutic options.

There is growing evidence that statins possess anti-inflammatory properties, as indicated by lowering of C reactive protein …

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  • Published Online First 11 October 2005

  • Conflict of interest: None.