Research Article| Volume 17, ISSUE 1, P60-73, January 1995

Efficacy and safety of auranofin in patients with active early rheumatoid arthritis

      This paper is only available as a PDF. To read, Please Download here.


      The efficacy and safety of auranofin, an oral gold compound, were investigated for the treatment of patients with active early rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The 48 patients enrolled in the study had RA that satisfied the diagnostic standards set in 1987 by the American College of Rheumatology, was of less than 5 years' duration, and was of stage I or II and class 1 or 2 according to the Steinbrocker system. Auranofin 3 mg was administered orally twice daily for 12 months. All patients also received nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs as a basic therapy. Some patients also received steroids, although the dose was limited to <5 mg/d prednisolone equivalent. No other disease-modifying antirheumatic drug (DMARD) was administered. On the first day of the trial and after 3, 6, and 12 months of treatment, clinical symptoms, modified Lansbury index, C-reactive protein, erythrocyte sedimentation rate, rheumatoid factor, and the patients' assessments of severity of pain, judged using a visual analog scale, were evaluated. All of these measurements had improved significantly after 12 months of treatment. Moreover, no adverse events were observed during the treatment period. Therefore, the results confirm that auranofin is an effective and safe DMARD and is useful as a first-line therapy in the treatment of patients with RA.
      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'


      Subscribe to Clinical Therapeutics
      Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
      Already an online subscriber? Sign in
      Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect


        • Forestier J
        L'aurotherapie dans les rheumatisms chroniques.
        Bull Soc Med Hop Paris. 1929; 53: 323
        • Empire Rheumatism Council
        Gold therapy in rheumatoid arthritis. Final report of a multicenter controlled trial.
        Ann Rheum Dis. 1961; 20: 315-324
        • Geddes DM
        • Brostoff J
        Pulmonary fibrosis associated with hypersensitivity to gold salts.
        BMJ. 1976; 1: 1444
        • Gould PW
        • McCormack PL
        • Palmer DG
        Pulmonary damage associated with sodium aurothiomalate therapy.
        J Rheumatol. 1977; 3: 181-182
        • Scott DL
        • Bradby GV
        • Aitman TJ
        • et al.
        Relationship of gold and penicillamine therapy to diffuse interstitial lung disease.
        Ann Rheum Dis. 1981; 40: 136-141
        • Bellelii A
        • Boiardi L
        • Tumiati B
        • Brigati C
        Diffuse interstitial lung disease associated with hypersensitivity to gold salt.
        Clin Exp Rheumatol. 1985; 3 (Letter): 181-182
        • Cats A
        A multicentre controlled trial of the effects of different dosages of gold therapy, followed by a maintenance dosage.
        Agents Actions. 1976; 6: 355-363
        • Furst DE
        • Levine S
        • Srinivasan R
        • et al.
        A double-blind trial of high versus conventional doses of gold salts for rheumatoid arthritis.
        Arthritis Rheum. 1977; 20: 1473-1480
        • Sharp JT
        Radiographic evaluation of the course of articular disease.
        Clin Rheum Dis. 1983; 9: 541-557
        • Brook A
        • Corbett M
        Radiographic changes in early rheumatoid disease.
        Ann Rheum Dis. 1977; 36: 71-73
        • Finkelstein AE
        • Walz DT
        • Batista V
        • et al.
        Auranofin. New oral gold compound for treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.
        Ann Rheum Dis. 1976; 35: 251-257
        • Sutton BM
        • McGusty E
        • Walz DT
        • DiMartino MJ
        Oral gold. Antiarthritic properties of alkylphosphinegold coordination complexes.
        J Med Chem. 1972; 15: 1095-1098
        • Gottlieb NL
        Comparative pharmacokinetics of parenteral and oral gold compounds.
        J Rheumatol. 1982; 9 (Suppl 8): 99-109
        • Luukkainen R
        Chrysotherapy in rheumatoid arthritis with particular emphasis on the effect of chrysotherapy on radiographical changes and on the optimal time of initiation of therapy.
        Scand J Rheumatol. 1980; 34 (Suppl): 1-56
        • Johnsen V
        • Borg G
        • Trang LE
        • et al.
        Auranofin (SK&F) in early rheumatoid arthritis: Results from a 24-month double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Effect on clinical and biochemical assessments.
        Scand J Rheumatol. 1989; 18: 251-260
        • Borg G
        • Allander E
        • Lund B
        • et al.
        Auranofin improves outcome in early rheumatoid arthritis. Results from a 2-year, double-blind, placebo-controlled study.
        J Rheumatol. 1988; 15: 1747-1754
        • The Cooperating Clinics Committee of the American Rheumatism Association
        A controlled trial of gold salt therapy in rheumatoid arthritis.
        Arthritis Rheum. 1973; 16: 353-358
        • Steinbrocker O
        • Traeger CH
        • Batterman RC
        Therapeutic criteria in rheumatoid arthritis.
        JAMA. 1949; 140: 659-662
        • Westergen A
        Studies of the suspension stability of the blood in pulmonary tuberculosis.
        Acta Med Scand. 1920; 54: 247-282
        • Singer JM
        • Plotz CM
        The latex fixation test: Application to the serologic diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis.
        Am J Med. 1956; 21: 888-892
        • Tillett WS
        • Francis T
        Serological reaction in pneumonia with a non protein somatic fraction of pneumococcus.
        J Exp Med. 1930; 52: 561-571
        • McCarthy DM
        Nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drug-induced ulcers: Management by traditional therapies.
        Gastroenterology. 1989; 96 (Suppl): 662-674
        • Shiokawa M
        • Nobunaga M
        • Saitoh T
        • et al.
        Epidemiologic survey of upper gastrointestinal disorders caused by nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents.
        Riumachi. 1991; 31 (In Japanese): 96-111
        • Smyth CJ
        Therapy of rheumatoid arthritis. A pyramidal plan.
        Postgrad Med. 1972; 51: 31-39
        • Wilske KR
        • Healey LA
        Remodeling the pyramid—a concept whose time has come.
        J Rheumatol. 1989; 16: 565-567
        • Fries JF
        Reevaluating the therapeutic approach to rheumatoid arthritis: The “Sawtooth” strategy.
        J Rheumatol. 1990; 17 (Suppl 22): 12-15
        • Blodgett Jr, RC
        • Pietrusko RG
        Long term efficacy and safety of auranofin: A review of clinical experience.
        Scand J Rheumatol. 1986; 63 (Suppl): 67-78
        • Davis P
        • Menard H
        • Thompson J
        • et al.
        One year comparative study of gold sodium thiomalate and auranofin in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.
        J Rheumatol. 1985; 12: 60-67
        • Heuer MA
        • Pietrusko RG
        • Morris RW
        • Scheffler BJ
        An analysis of worldwide safety experience with auranofin.
        J Rheumatol. 1985; 12: 695-699