The Relationship Between Uric Acid and Inflammatory Markers
- Uric acid is a substance found in the blood that may contribute to certain chronic medical conditions and disorders, such as diabetes, insulin resistance, and high blood pressure. High uric acid concentrations have been associated with stroke and heart disease, as well as chronic heart failure. In particular, researchers are interested in determining the relationship between uric acid and inflammatory markers, or chemicals in the blood that can indicate inflammation and other problems with the body.
- To study the specific effects of changes in uric acid in the body.
- To determine whether uric acid contributes to inflammation in the body.
- Healthy individuals between 50 and 75 years of age.
- This study will involve four visits: a screening visit, two study visits, and a followup visit.
- At the screening visit, participants will have a physical examination, blood and urine tests, and an electrocardiogram. Participants will be divided into two groups based on the existing amount of uric acid in their blood.
- Within 7 days of the screening visit, participants will have a full-day study visit with a magnetic resonance imaging scan, followed by a high-fat meal and further blood samples collected over the following 8 hours.
- At least 2 days after the first study visit, participants will have the second study visit, which will require a 2-night stay at the National Institutes of Health. Participants will have a metabolism test, and will receive the following infusions based on the groups they were assigned to at the screening visit.
- Group A (low uric acid) will receive either uric acid or a placebo.
- Group B (moderate to high uric acid) will receive either Rasburicase (a drug that reduces the amount of uric acid in the blood) or a placebo.
- After the infusions and related blood tests, participants will have a high-fat meal with further blood and urine samples.
- Approximately 2 weeks after the second study visit, participants will have a final followup visit with additional blood and urine tests to determine whether the levels of uric acid in the blood have returned to normal.
|Study Design:||Allocation: Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Safety/Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Crossover Assignment
Masking: Open Label
|Official Title:||The Relationship Between Uric Acid and Inflammatory Markers|
- Effects of uric acid on inflammatory markers
|Study Start Date:||March 2009|
|Study Completion Date:||January 2014|
|Primary Completion Date:||January 2014 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)|
Uric acid (UA) is a terminal product of purine metabolism with strong antioxidant properties. UA has sizeable concentrations in biologic fluids only in humans and primates because they have a non-functional mutation of the enzyme uricase that, in other animals, transforms UA to allantoin. It has been hypothesized that this mutation has emerged evolutionarily because through this mechanism, humans can counteract the excessive oxidative stress that occurs in many critical pathologic conditions. Partially in contrast with this theory, high levels of UA have been associated with a number of negative health outcomes, including cardiovascular as well as all-cause mortality. Although it is possible that the UA elevation is merely a marker of critical health because it is an inducible antioxidant, researchers have questioned whether UA has beneficial or detrimental effect on health status. For example, we recently demonstrated that higher UA levels are cross-sectionally associated with higher levels of pro-inflammatory markers, and predict the increase in inflammatory markers over a 3-year follow-up. Understanding whether UA exerts a protective or detrimental effect on health is important in deciding whether mild hyperuricemia should or should not be aggressively treated.
Unfortunately, observational studies cannot fully address this question. In fact, we cannot exclude that the cross-sectional and longitudinal association between UA, inflammatory markers and negative health outcomes, may simply reflect the fact that UA is an inducible antioxidant that is produced in response to increasing oxidative stress. To verify the hypothesis that UA activates inflammation, we plan to conduct two complementary randomized controlled trials, each one including 10 treated and 10 control subjects. In the first trials, subjects with low UA will be administered 500 mg of UA intravenously. In the second trials, subjects with moderately elevated UA will be administered a single acute dose of Rasburicase. Then inflammatory markers will be measured at multiple points in time, for a total of 32 hours. We hypothesize that an acute increase in the circulating levels of UA will be followed by increasing levels of inflammatory markers. At the same time, an acute reduction of UA levels will be followed by a progressive reduction of inflammatory markers. This study should provide information that will help clinicians to decide whether to or not to treat mild hyperuricemia.
Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT01323335
|United States, Maryland|
|National Institute of Aging, Clinical Research Unit|
|Baltimore, Maryland, United States, 21224|
|Principal Investigator:||Luigi Ferrucci, M.D.||National Institute on Aging (NIA)|