Transcriptional Activity of Nuclear Factor κB Family Genes in Patients with Systemic Sclerosis
Background. Systemic sclerosis (SSc) is a connective tissue disease of unknown etiology and unclear pathogenesis. Evaluation of the activation of nuclear factor κB (NF-κB) family genes IκBα, p50, p52, p65, and c-Rel, potentially involved in the regulation of immunity, inflammation, angiogenesis, and tissue remodeling in SSc, was carried out. Method. The study included 19 patients with limited SSc, 11 patients with early SSc, and 10 healthy persons constituting the control group. Real-time QRT-PCR was used to evaluate the mRNAs in peripheral blood samples. Results. The patients with early SSc showed a decrease in transcriptional activity of IκBα inhibitor and c-Rel subunit. Transcriptional activity decrease in the other patients with limited SSc included genes encoding c-Rel and p50, subunits of NF-κB factor. Conclusions. Deregulation of intracellular signal transduction by NF-κB takes place at the beginning of SSc and in its fibrosis stage. Associations between clinical variables and NF-κB related gene expression as well as the activation of NF-κB family members in SSc patients should be addressed in future studies.