Rheumatoid arthritis (RA)

RA is a chronic, erosive, inflammatory disease that affects the joints in the body

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic, erosive, inflammatory disease that affects the joints in the body, leading to leading to the destruction of the affected joints and increasing disability. RA usually requires life-long control of inflammation by anti-rheumatic drugs.[1]

It is an autoimmune disorder, which means that the immune system attacks the body’s own tissues.5 RA can affect people of all ages, but it most commonly develops between the ages of 40 and 60.[2]  The exact cause of RA is unknown, but it is believed to be a combination of genetic and environmental factors.5 Smoking and obesity are also known to increase the risk of developing RA.[3] RA is a relatively common condition, with a global prevalence of approximately 0.5-1%.[4] It is more common in women than in men, with a female to male ratio of around 3:15

There is currently no cure for RA, but there are various treatments available that can help manage the symptoms and halt the progression of the disease.5 Despite progress in the treatment of RA, there remains a considerable unmet need as sustained remission remains rare.7 For patients with RA, treatment success is determined by more than an effect on joints only. Therefore, there is a need for comprehensive disease management.[5],[6],[7]

Treatment options include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs), and biologic drugs.5Early diagnosis and treatment are crucial in managing RA, as it can lead to joint damage and disability if left untreated.5 Regular monitoring and follow-up with a healthcare provider is important in managing the condition and ensuring that the treatment plan is effective.

We are committed to advancing the treatment of RA by exploring new frontiers in research and developing innovative therapies that address the unmet needs of patients living with this chronic autoimmune disease.

[1] Mayo Clinic. (2021). Rheumatoid arthritis. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/rheumatoid-arthritis/symptoms-causes/syc-20353648

[2] Arthritis Foundation. (n.d.). What is rheumatoid arthritis? https://www.arthritis.org/diseases/rheumatoid-arthritis

[3] Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2021). Rheumatoid arthritis (RA). https://www.cdc.gov/arthritis/basics/rheumatoid-arthritis.html

[4] Smolen, J. S., Aletaha, D., & McInnes, I. B. (2016). Rheumatoid arthritis. The Lancet, 388(10055), 2023-2038. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(16)30173-8

[5] Ishida M, et al. Mod Rheumatol 2018;28:789–799.

[6] Lee YC, et al. Arthritis Res Ther 2011;13:R83.

[7] Olsen CL, et al. Arthritis Care Res 2016;68:1043–1048.

Factsheet

Our commitment in immunology

Do you need everything in one place about our efforts in brightening the future of immunology?

Disease areas

More about our work in Oncology

We are united around our mission to redefine the future of cancer treatment. Our goal is to help people facing cancer live longer, better lives.

Partnerships

Work with us!

We combine internal and external innovation to add new capabilities, technologies and product candidates. Let’s start #PioneeringForPatients, together!

Galapagos Health

Explore our HCP Portal

Are you a healthcare professional? Are you looking for Galapagos’ medical education, product information or congress presence? Look no further!