Drugs

, Volume 32, Supplement 1, pp 27–34 | Cite as

5-Aminosalicylic Acid or Sulphapyridine

Which is the Active Moiety of Sulphasalazine in Rheumatoid Arthritis?
  • Allister J. Taggart
  • Vera C. Neumann
  • Jacqueline Hill
  • Carol Astbury
  • Patricia Le Gallez
  • Jonathan S. Dixon
Section 1: Mode of Action

Summary

Thirty patients with active rheumatoid arthritis participated in an open study of 6 months’ treatment with either 5-aminosalicylic acid or sulphapyridine, the two moieties of sulphasalazine. Patients were assessed at regular intervals using a number of clinical and biochemical tests designed to detect specific antirheumatic activity.

Patients taking sulphasalazine showed significant improvement in most parameters of disease activity, but those taking 5-aminosalicylic acid did not improve despite the fact that high serum concentrations of 5-aminosalicylic acid and acetyl 5-aminosalicylic acid were achieved. These results suggest that sulphapyridine is the active moiety of sulphasalazine. Its possible mode of action is discussed.

Nausea was a frequent problem in patients taking sulphapyridine. Unless this problem can be overcome, sulphapyridine is unlikely to offer any therapeutic advantages over sulphasalazine in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.

Keywords

Rheumatoid Arthritis Sulphasalazine Plasma Viscosity Acetylator Phenotype Sulphapyridine 

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Copyright information

© ADIS Press Limited 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Allister J. Taggart
    • 1
  • Vera C. Neumann
    • 1
  • Jacqueline Hill
    • 1
  • Carol Astbury
    • 1
  • Patricia Le Gallez
    • 1
  • Jonathan S. Dixon
    • 1
  1. 1.The General Infirmary at Leeds and the Clinical Pharmacology UnitRoyal Bath HospitalHarrogateUK

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