Big MAC attack in osteoarthritis

An international research team has shown that inhibiting the complement system slows disease progression in mice with osteoarthritis, thus pointing to complement inhibitors as potential disease modifiers.1 Although the findings offer companies developing inhibitors of the complement system a potential new indication, the safety and side effects of long-term inhibition will have to be determined first.

There are several approved osteoarthritis (OA) therapies on the market that treat disease-related pain and inflammation, but none targets the underlying processes that lead to cartilage destruction and bone spurs in the joints.

Multiple studies have implicated the complement system in degenerative diseases such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD)2-4 and Alzheimer's disease (AD).5-7 Thus, a team led by William Robinson wanted to know whether complement also played a role in joint degeneration in OA.

Robinson is associate professor of medicine in the

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