Genes may predispose people to have certain microbial signatures in their gut that, in turn, make them susceptible to developing reactive arthritis. This is the main finding of a recent study in which researchers investigated whether perturbations in the intestinal microbiome play a role in susceptibility to reactive arthritis in the face of triggers, such as gastrointestinal (GI) or genitourinary (GU) infection.1
Explore this issueDecember 2018
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The study, “Gut Microbiota Perturbations in Reactive Arthritis and Postinfectious Spondyloarthritis” by Julia Manasson, MD, rheumatology post-doctoral fellow, Division of Rheumatology, Department of Medicine, NYU Langone Health, New York, and colleagues, is the first to use culture-independent, high-throughput DNA sequencing to examine the gut microbiome in patients with reactive arthritis and postinfectious spondyloarthritis.
“Although reactive arthritis is thought to be triggered by certain GI or GU infections, we often do not know in an individual patient what organisms may be responsible,” says Allen Steere, MD, professor of medicine, Harvard Medical School, director of clinical research, Rheumatology Unit, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, who commented on the study for The Rheumatologist.