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עמוד בית
Fri, 30.09.22

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July 2019
Carlo Perricone MD PhD, Daphna Katz, Cinzia Ciccacci PhD, Fulvia Ceccarelli MD PhD, Guido Valesini MD, Yehuda Shoenfeld MD FRCP MaACR, Paola Borgiani PhD and Fabrizio Conti MD PhD

Recurrent pericarditis is a state of repetitive inflammation of the pericardium with intervals of remission. The etiology of recurrent pericarditis is still largely unknown, yet most causes are presumed to be immune mediated. Genetic factors, including human leukocyte antigen (HLA) haplotypes, can be involved in dysregulation of the immune system and as a predisposition to several autoimmune conditions, including recurrent pericarditis. Several diseases are frequently associated with such manifestations. They include systemic lupus erythematosus, familial Mediterranean fever, and tumor necrosis factor receptor-associated periodic syndrome. However, idiopathic recurrent pericarditis remains the most frequently observed clinical condition and the conundrum of this disease still needs to be solved.

September 2017
Ido-David Dechtman MD, Chagai Grossman MD, Yael Shinar MD, Rinat Cohen MD, Eyal Nachum MD, Ehud Raanani MD, Avi Livneh MD and Ilan Ben-Zvi MD

Background: Postpericardiotomy syndrome (PPS) is characterized by pleuro-pericardial inflammation, which occurs in patients undergoing surgical procedures involving the pleura, pericardium, or both. The syndrome is considered to be immune mediated. However, its pathogenesis is not fully understood. It has previously been demonstrated that the Mediterranean Fever (MEFV) gene, which is associated with familial Mediterranean fever (FMF), has a role in the activation and expression of several inflammatory diseases.

Objectives: To investigate whether carriage of the MEFV mutation may precipitate PPS or affect its phenotype.

Methods: The study population included 45 patients who underwent cardiac surgery and developed PPS. The control group was comprised of 41 patients who did not develop PPS. Clinical and demographic data was collected. The severity of PPS was evaluated. Genetic analysis to determine the carriage of one the three most common MEFV gene mutations (M694V, V726A, E148Q) was performed. The carriage rate of MEFV mutations in patients with and without PPS was compared. Association between MEFV mutation carriage and severity of PPS was evaluated. 

Results: The rate of mutation carriage in the MEFV gene was similar in patients with and without PPS (15.6% in the study groups vs. 29.3% in the control group, P = 0.1937). The rate of mutation carriage in the MEFV gene was significantly lower among patients with severe PPS as compared to patients with mild-moderate PPS (4.8% vs. 25%, P < 0.05).

Conclusions: Carriage of mutations in the MEFV gene is not associated with development of PPS; however, it may affect PPS severity.

 

July 2017
Abid Awisat, Gleb Slobodin, Nizar Jiries, Michael Rozenbaum, Doron Rimar, Nina Boulman, Lisa Kaly, Karina Zilber, Shira Ginsberg and Itzhak Rosner
June 2015
Naomi Nussinovitch MD PhD, Konstantin Esev MD, Merav Lidar MD, Udi Nussinovitch MD PhD and Avi Livneh MD

Abstract

Background: The relationship between autonomic nervous system (ANS) dysfunction and familial Mediterranean fever (FMF) is controversial. We recently reported normal heart rate variability (HRV), suggestive of normal ANS, in patients with uncomplicated FMF.

Objectives: To evaluate ANS function in colchicine non-responders by using the HRV tool.

Methods: The study group comprised 24 FMF patients suffering from recurrent FMF attacks despite treatment with a maximal colchicine dose. Electrocardiogram was measured under strict conditions and HRV parameters were calculated. Results were compared with age- and gender-matched unaffected controls.

Results: No statistically significant difference was found between the groups in any of the HRV parameters: maximal RR, minimal RR and average RR intervals, standard deviation of RR interval, square root of the mean squared differences of successive RR intervals, HRV triangular index, NN50, pNN50, and power spectral analysis parameters.

Conclusions: Although a small difference in HRV parameters in the current study cannot be entirely excluded, FMF patients in whom colchicine did not provide adequate symptomatic relief and who did not develop amyloidosis appear to have normal HRV parameters suggestive of normal ANS function, compared with healthy adults. 

March 2015
Philip J. Hashkes MD MSc and Bin Huang PhD

Abstract

Background: The familial Mediterranean fever 50 score (FMF50) score was recently devised to define response to treatment and as an outcome measure for clinical trials of FMF.

Objectives: To examine the performance of the FMF50 score in a previously published trial of rilonacept for patients whose FMF was resistant or intolerant to colchicine.

Methods: We reanalyzed the data from our controlled trial of rilonacept vs. placebo in 14 patients with colchicine-resistant or intolerant FMF using the FMF50 score as the primary outcome. The FMF50 score required improvement by ≥ 50 in five of six criteria (attack frequency, attack duration, global patient assessment, global physician assessment, frequency of attacks with arthritis, and levels of acute-phase reactants without worsening of the sixth criterion).

Results: In the original trial rilonacept was considered effective according to the primary outcome measure (differences in the attack frequency) with eight analyzable patients considered responders and four as non-responders. According to the FMF50 score, only two participants would have been considered responders to rilonacept, and one to placebo. Only two participants had ≥ 50% differences between rilonacept and placebo in five criteria. The major explanation for non-response to treatment was that with rilonacept the duration of attack decreased by ≥ 50% in only 2 participants and 5 participants had no attacks of arthritis either during screening (before randomization) or during treatment with rilonacept.

Conclusions: The proposed FMF50 score did not differentiate well between responders and non-responders compared to the a priori defined primary outcome measure in this successful controlled study. 

May 2014
Ilan Ben-Zvi MD and Avi Livneh MD
Familial Mediterranean fever (FMF) is a genetic autoinflammatory disease characterized by spontaneous short attacks of fever, elevated acute-phase reactants, and serositis. Approximately 5%–10% of FMF patients do not respond to colchicine treatment and another 5% are intolerant to colchicine because of side effects. Recently, following the discovery of the inflammasome and recognition of the importance of interleukin-1β (IL-1β) as the major cytokine involved in the pathogenesis of FMF, IL-1β blockade has been suggested and tried sporadically to treat FMF, with good results. To date, case reports and small case series involving colchicine-resistant FMF patients and showing high efficacy of IL-1β blockade have been reported. At the Israel Center for FMF at the Sheba Medical Center the first double-blind randomized placebo-controlled trial of anakinra in FMF patients who are resistant or intolerant to colchicines is underway. In this report we discuss the mechanism of colchicine resistance in FMF patients, the data in the literature on IL1β blockade in these patients, and the anakinra trial inclusion criteria and study protocol.

April 2012
I. Ben-Zvi, I. Danilesko, G. Yahalom, O. Kukuy, R. Rahamimov, A. Livneh and S. Kivity

Background: Amyloidosis of familial Mediterranean fever (FMF) may lead to end-stage renal failure, culminating in kidney transplantation in some patients.

Objectives: To assess demographic, clinical and genetic risk factors for the development of FMF amyloidosis in a subset of kidney-transplanted patients and to evaluate the impact of transplantation on the FMF course.

Methods: Demographic, clinical and genetic data were abstracted from the files, interviews and examinations of 16 kidney-transplanted FMF amyloidosis patients and compared with the data of 18 FMF patients without amyloidosis.

Results: Age at disease onset and clinical severity of the FMF amyloidosis patients prior to transplantation were similar to FMF patients without amyloidosis. Compliance with colchicine treatment, however, was much lower (50% vs. 98 %). Post-transplantation, FMF amyloidosis patients experienced fewer of the typical serosal attacks than did their counterparts (mean 2214 days since last attack vs. 143 days). Patients with FMF amyloidosis carried only M694V mutations in the FMF gene, while FMF without amyloidosis featured other mutations as well.

Conclusions: Compliance with treatment and genetic makeup but not severity of FMF constitutes major risk factors for the development of amyloidosis in FMF. Transplantation seems to prevent FMF attacks. The protective role of immunosuppressive therapy cannot be excluded.

 

U. Nussinovitch, I. Ben-Zvi and A. Livneh

Background: The association between familial Mediterranean fever (FMF) and increased risk for ventricular arrhythmias is controversial, and data on this subject are meager.

Objectives: To evaluate QT variability index (QTVI) and other repolarization markers associated with arrhythmogenity in patients with amyloidosis of FMF.

Methods: The study group comprised 12 FMF patients with amyloidosis, and 14 age and gender-matched healthy subjects served as the control group. QT measurements were conducted according to accepted procedure, using computerized software for recording and analysis.

Results: No differences were found in clinical and demographic parameters in the study and control groups, except for hypertension which was more common in the FMF amyloidosis group. QTc and power spectral analysis of QT variability parameters were similar in both groups. Nevertheless, QTVI values in FMF amyloidosis patients were significantly higher than in healthy individuals (-1.02 ± 0.38, vs. -1.36 ± 0.32 respectively, P = 0.02).

Conclusions: Compared with healthy controls, amyloidosis of FMF is associated with increased QTVI. It remains unknown whether this finding is solely amyloidosis related and whether it has any prognostic significance.

 

U. Arad, E. Niv, D. Caspi and O. Elkayam

Monogenic periodic fever syndromes are characterized by recurrent episodes of fever, accompanied by localized inflammatory manifestations. Among them, familial Mediterranean fever (FMF) is the most studied and is by far the most prevalent periodic fever syndrome in Israel. We present a diagnostic workup of a patient suffering from a periodic fever syndrome, initially thought to be FMF and characterized by attacks of fever, severe abdominal pain, a migratory erythematous rash and conjunctivitis. The development of periorbital edema presenting as diplopia led to consideration of tumor necrosis factor receptor-1-associated periodic syndrome (TRAPS). Genetic tests confirmed the diagnosis. This case should alert us that even in Israel, a patient with periodic fever, not fully consistent with the typical features of FMF, should be evaluated for other periodic fever syndromes.

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