We investigated Fingolimod treatment effects on the RAGE (receptor for advanced glycation endproducts) axis in multiple sclerosis (MS) patients. The primary outcome of the study was whether Fingolimod treatment increases serum levels of the soluble RAGE isoforms, sRAGE and esRAGE – both being considered putative endogenous inhibitors of RAGE signaling. Additional variables were serum levels of RAGE ligands, the high mobility group box (HMGB)1 and pentosidine.Methods:
Serum levels of the study variables were measured by ELISA, and compared between baseline (before Fingolimod treatment) and 6 and 12 months post-drug treatment in 17 relapsing MS patients. Fingolimod treatment effects on MS disease progression were assessed by comparing pre- and post-Fingolimod values of the EDSS and rate of clinical relapse, and changes in the T1-and T2-enahncing lesions on the MRI scan.methodsResults:
Twelve months treatment with Fingolimod increased serum levels of sRAGE and esRAGE by 32.4% (P = 0.004) and 48.5% (P = 0.007) respectively. In addition, Fingolimod treatment reduced serum levels of HMGB1 by 71.6% (P = 0.02) and pentosidine serum levels by 41.3% (P = 0.12). EDSS remained stable (baseline: 3.57 ± 1.56; post-Fingolimod: 3.54 ± 1.2, P = 0.96) and the rate of clinical relapse decreased near significantly (P = 0.094). T1-and T2-enhancing lesions remained stable, showing no significant changes pre-vs. post-Fingolimod treatment.Conclusion:
Fingolimod mediates modulation of the RAGE axis which apparently contributes to the Fingolimod's anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective effects. These findings may provide a rationale for the clinical efficacy of Fingolimod in pathological states other than MS, where dysregulation of the RAGE axis plays a role.