The researchers say the increased prevalence of relapses in patients with elevated MBDA scores “may reflect subclinical inflammation at the target tissue level such as residual synovitis or osteitis. It is conceivable that inflammation in these patients is effectively suppressed by DMARDs at the clinical level but has not completely resolved. Hence, tapering of DMARDs may permit recurrence of inflammatory disease activity associated with clinical relapse. In contrast, patients having low MBDA scores may indeed experience true resolution of inflammation, which lowers the risk for disease relapse if DMARDs are tapered. Our data suggest that MBDA scores are more effective than clinical scores in prediction of disease relapses.”
The MBDA blood test is marketed in the U.S. as Vectra DA by Crescendo Bioscience, Myriad Genetics.
The study had no commercial funding and the authors declared no competing interests.
Revised by the editors of The Rheumatologist on 1/12/2016 to correct relapse rate information.