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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 518094, 20 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/518094
Review Article

Mediators of Inflammation-Induced Bone Damage in Arthritis and Their Control by Herbal Products

1Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 21201, USA
2Division of Rheumatology, Department of Medicine, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 21201, USA

Received 9 August 2012; Revised 6 December 2012; Accepted 10 December 2012

Academic Editor: Cheorl-Ho Kim

Copyright © 2013 Siddaraju M. Nanjundaiah et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disease characterized by chronic inflammation of the synovial joints leading to bone and cartilage damage. Untreated inflammatory arthritis can result in severe deformities and disability. The use of anti-inflammatory agents and biologics has been the mainstay of treatment of RA. However, the prolonged use of such agents may lead to severe adverse reactions. In addition, many of these drugs are quite expensive. These limitations have necessitated the search for newer therapeutic agents for RA. Natural plant products offer a promising resource for potential antiarthritic agents. We describe here the cellular and soluble mediators of inflammation-induced bone damage (osteoimmunology) in arthritis. We also elaborate upon various herbal products that possess antiarthritic activity, particularly mentioning the specific target molecules. As the use of natural product supplements by RA patients is increasing, this paper presents timely and useful information about the mechanism of action of promising herbal products that can inhibit the progression of inflammation and bone damage in the course of arthritis.