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Serum matrix metalloproteinase-9 level in systemic lupus erythematosus with peripheral neuropathy



To evaluate whether serum matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) is associated with peripheral neuropathy (PN) in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and to determine the relationship between MMP-9 serum level and SLE disease activity, lupus manifestations, and laboratory markers.

Patients and methods

A total of 30 patients with SLE with PN, 30 patients with SLE without PN, and 20 healthy controls were included in this study. SLE clinical manifestations, Systemic Lupus Activity Measure (SLAM) index, and laboratory markers were evaluated. All the data were compared and correlated with serum MMP-9 level.


MMP-9 showed a significant increase in frequency in SLE with PN group compared with SLE without PN group (P1=0.037), SLE with PN group compared with control group (P2<0.001), and SLE without PN group compared with control group (P3<0.001). In comparison between SLE with normal MMP-9 group versus SLE with high MMP-9 group, it showed no statistically significant difference between the two groups regarding demographic data, SLAM index, Erythrocytes sedimentation rate (ESR), C-reactive protein (CRP), Antinuclear antibodies (ANA), Antiphospholipid antibodies (APL), C3, C4, anti-double-stranded DNA, and lupus clinical features, except malar rash and lupus nephritis, which showed significant increase in SLE with high MMP-9 group compared with SLE with normal MMP-9 group (P=0.042 for each). A significant positive correlation was detected between MMP-9 serum level and SLAM index (P=0.037), whereas anti-double-stranded DNA did not show significant correlation. There was a significant relation between increasing the risk of PN and MMP-9 (odds ratio=4.031).


Significant elevation of serum MMP-9 may increase the risk of PN in patients with SLE, and it may correlate with disease activity, lupus nephritis, and skin involvement.


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Correspondence to Niveen Abdallah Ibrahim MBBCh.

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Imam, M.H., Koriem, H.K., Hassan, M.M. et al. Serum matrix metalloproteinase-9 level in systemic lupus erythematosus with peripheral neuropathy. Egypt Rheumatol Rehabil 46, 211–220 (2019).

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