Uric acid may increase likelihood of severe osteoarthritis

By Anton Zuiker
The amount of uric acid in one's joints may increase the likelihood of severe osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis worldwide, according to Kraus and her collaborators. The researchers looked at 159 people, who had knee osteoarthritis but no history of gout, a type of arthritis triggered by uric acid crystals in the joints. The researchers found the severity of osteoarthritis in their knees to be strongly correlated with the amount of uric acid in their knees. The results, which are published online in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), show, despite the lack of gout history, above normal uric acid levels in 39 percent of the study population, and evidence of the form of inflammation in the joints that is typically triggered by uric acid crystals. [box type="info"]Denoble, A., Huffman, K., Stabler, T., Kelly, S., Hershfield, M., McDaniel, G., Coleman, R., & Kraus, V. (2011). Uric acid is a danger signal of increasing risk for osteoarthritis through inflammasome activation Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1012743108[/box]