Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a refractory systemic autoimmune disease with chronic synovial inflammation. Sustained synovial inflammation leads to progressive destruction of bone and cartilage. Treatment to restore joints that have been destroyed irreversibly is not to be established yet even with the recent development of antirheumatic drugs and biological agents. Stage-specific embryonic antigen-3 (SSEA-3), a marker of human embryonic stem (ES) cell, acts as stem cells in the blood. SSEA-3 positive cells derived from RA synovial tissue have higher differentiating abilities than that of SSEA-3 negative cells and inhibitory effects on arthritis in collagen antibody-induced arthritis mice study. SSEA-3 positive cells derived from RA synovial tissue might have the inhibitory effect on arthritis and would be one of the cell sources for new RA treatment. The present manuscript is a brief review of mesenchymal stem cells in RA and described with the potential of RA cell therapy by SSEA-3 positive cells based on our research.
Part of the book: Newest Updates in Rheumatology