Alpha-Lipoic Acid May Benefit Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis

In a study involving mice, alpha-lipoic acid was found to attenuate the development of collagen-induced arthritis (CIA) in a dose-dependent manner. The mice were divided into three groups. Group1 received alpha-lipoic acid (ALA) 10 mg/kg; Group2 received ALA 100 mg/kg; and Group3 received a placebo. Results found that mice treated with lipoic acid experienced a dose-dependent reduction in CIA. Furthermore, bone erosion and destructive changes were prevented with ALA administration in vivo, and formation of osteoclasts was inhibited in vitro. Levels of intracellular reactive oxygen species, and concentrations of TNF-alpha, IL-1 beta, IL-6, and synovial NF-kappa B binding were found to be markedly higher among mice with CIA as compared to controls; after treatment with alpha-lipoic acid, these levels decreased significantly. The authors of this study conclude, "these results indicate that alpha-lipoic acid may be a new adjunctive therapy for rheumatoid arthritis."