Publications by authors named "Ronald Prussick"

13 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Subclinical Liver Disease is Associated with Subclinical Atherosclerosis in Psoriasis: Results from Two Observational Studies.

J Invest Dermatol 2021 Jul 19. Epub 2021 Jul 19.

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD, USA. Electronic address:

Psoriasis is associated with a higher risk of liver diseases. We investigated the impact of hepatic steatosis (European cohort) and hepatic inflammation (United States cohort) on subclinical atherosclerosis. In the European cohort (n=76 psoriasis participants and 76 controls), non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), assessed by the sonographic hepatorenal index (SHRI), was more prevalent in psoriasis than controls (61% vs 45%; p=.04). Psoriasis participants with NAFLD had a higher prevalence of subclinical atherosclerosis (ultrasonographic presence of plaque in femoral or carotid arteries) than psoriasis without NAFLD (61% vs 23%; p=.006) and controls with NAFLD (61% vs 32%; p<.05). SHRI was a determinant of subclinical atherosclerosis in psoriasis (OR, 3.5; p=.01). In the United States cohort, (n=162 psoriasis participants who underwent positron emission tomography and coronary CT angiography), those with high hepatic F-FDG uptake had higher noncalcified (1.3 (0.49 mm) vs 1.0 (0.40 mm)), fibrofatty (0.23 (0.15 mm) vs 0.11 (0.087 mm)), and lipid rich necrotic core (4.3 (2.3 mm) vs 3.0 (1.7 mm)) coronary burden (all p<.001,). Hepatic F-FDG uptake associated with noncalcified (β=0.28; p<.001), fibrofatty (β=0.49; p<.001) and lipid rich necrotic core (β=0.28; p=.003) burden. These results demonstrate the downstream cardiovascular effects of subclinical liver disease in psoriasis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jid.2021.05.034DOI Listing
July 2021

Chronic inflammation in psoriasis promotes visceral adiposity associated with noncalcified coronary burden over time.

JCI Insight 2020 11 19;5(22). Epub 2020 Nov 19.

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, Bethesda, Maryland, USA.

BACKGROUNDPsoriasis is a chronic inflammatory skin disease associated with increased obesity, noncalcified coronary artery burden (NCB), and incident myocardial infarction. Here, we sought to assess the relationship among inflammation, visceral adipose tissue (VAT), and NCB. Furthermore, we evaluated whether improvement in VAT would be associated with reduction in NCB over time in psoriasis.METHODSConsecutive psoriasis patients underwent coronary CT angiography to quantify NCB and abdominal CT to calculate VAT at baseline (n = 237), 1 year (n = 176), and 4 years (n = 50).RESULTSPatients with high levels of high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) had significantly greater visceral adiposity (17,952.9 ± 849.2 cc3 vs. 13370.7 ± 806.8 cc3, P < 0.001) and noncalcified coronary burden (1.26 ± 0.03 vs. 1.07 ± 0.02 mm2) than those with low levels of hs-CRP. Those with higher levels of VAT had more systemic inflammation (hs-CRP, median [IQR], 2.5 mg/L [1.0-5.3 mg/L] vs. 1.2 mg/L [0.6-2.9 mg/L]), with approximately 50% higher NCB (1.42 ± 0.6 mm2 vs. 0.91 ± 0.2 mm2, P < 0.001). VAT associated with NCB in fully adjusted models (β = 0.47, P < 0.001). At 1-year follow-up, patients who had worsening hs-CRP had an increase in VAT (14,748.7 ± 878.1 cc3 to 15,158.7 ± 881.5 cc3; P = 0.03), whereas those who had improved hs-CRP improved their VAT (16,876.1 ± 915.2 cc3 to 16310.4 ± 889.6 cc3; P = 0.04). At 1 year, there was 10.3% reduction in NCB in those who had decreased VAT (β = 0.26, P < 0.0001), which persisted in a subset of patients at 4 years (β = 0.39, P = 0.003).CONCLUSIONSInflammation drives development of VAT, increased cardiometabolic risk, and NCB in psoriasis. Reduction of inflammation associated with reduction in VAT and associated with longitudinal improvement in NCB. These findings demonstrate the important role of inflammation in the development of VAT in humans and its effect on early atherogenesis.TRIAL REGISTRATIONClinicalTrials.gov NCT01778569.FUNDINGThis study was supported by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute Intramural Research Program (HL006193-05), the NIH Medical Research Scholars Program, a public-private partnership supported jointly by the NIH and contributions to the Foundation for the NIH from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation (no. 2014194), the American Association for Dental Research, the Colgate-Palmolive Company, Genentech, and Elsevier as well as private donors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1172/jci.insight.142534DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7710282PMC
November 2020

Psoriasis improvement and satisfaction in patients using a clobetasol spray and oral apremilast combination regimen: A pilot study.

J Am Acad Dermatol 2020 Oct 21;83(4):1198-1200. Epub 2020 Feb 21.

Department of Dermatology, The George Washington School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Washington, DC. Electronic address:

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jaad.2020.02.036DOI Listing
October 2020

Reply to: "Response to: 'Use of complementary and alternative medicine by patients with psoriasis'".

J Am Acad Dermatol 2019 10 13;81(4):e107-e110. Epub 2019 Jun 13.

Department of Dermatology, The George Washington School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Washington, DC. Electronic address:

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jaad.2019.06.009DOI Listing
October 2019

Use of complementary and alternative medicine by patients with psoriasis.

J Am Acad Dermatol 2019 07 29;81(1):280-283. Epub 2019 Mar 29.

Department of Dermatology, The George Washington School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Washington, DC. Electronic address:

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jaad.2019.03.059DOI Listing
July 2019

Dietary Recommendations for Adults With Psoriasis or Psoriatic Arthritis From the Medical Board of the National Psoriasis Foundation: A Systematic Review.

JAMA Dermatol 2018 08;154(8):934-950

Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles.

Importance: Psoriasis is a chronic, inflammatory skin disease and has significant associated morbidity and effect on quality of life. It is important to determine whether dietary interventions help reduce disease severity in patients with psoriatic diseases.

Objective: To make evidence-based dietary recommendations for adults with psoriasis and/or psoriatic arthritis from the Medical Board of the National Psoriasis Foundation.

Evidence Review: We used literature from prior systematic reviews as well as additional primary literature from the MEDLINE database from January 1, 2014, to August 31, 2017, that evaluated the impact of diet on psoriasis. We included observational and interventional studies of patients with psoriasis or psoriatic arthritis. The quality of included studies was assessed using the Newcastle-Ottawa scale for observational studies and the Cochrane Risk of Bias Tool for interventional studies. We made evidence-based dietary recommendations, which were voted on by the National Psoriasis Foundation Medical Board.

Findings: We identified 55 studies meeting the inclusion criteria for this review. These studies represent 77 557 unique participants of which 4534 have psoriasis. Based on the literature, we strongly recommend dietary weight reduction with a hypocaloric diet in overweight and obese patients with psoriasis. We weakly recommend a gluten-free diet only in patients who test positive for serologic markers of gluten sensitivity. Based on low-quality data, select foods, nutrients, and dietary patterns may affect psoriasis. For patients with psoriatic arthritis, we weakly recommend vitamin D supplementation and dietary weight reduction with a hypocaloric diet in overweight and obese patients. Dietary interventions should always be used in conjunction with standard medical therapies for psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.

Conclusions And Relevance: Adults with psoriasis and/or psoriatic arthritis can supplement their standard medical therapies with dietary interventions to reduce disease severity. These dietary recommendations from the National Psoriasis Foundation Medical Board will help guide clinicians regarding the utility of dietary interventions in adults with psoriatic diseases.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jamadermatol.2018.1412DOI Listing
August 2018

Psoriasis in solid organ transplant patients: best practice recommendations from The Medical Board of the National Psoriasis Foundation.

J Dermatolog Treat 2018 Jun 24;29(4):329-333. Epub 2017 Oct 24.

e Department of Dermatology , Eastern Virginia Medical School , Norfolk , VA , USA.

Background: Treatment of solid organ transplant patients who have psoriasis can be a therapeutic challenge. Biologic and systemic drugs used to treat psoriasis can result in an increase in infections or malignancies.

Objective: We sought to develop a treatment algorithm for organ transplant recipients (OTR) diagnosed with psoriasis vulgaris.

Methods: A systematic literature search for psoriasis treatment in organ transplant patients was performed using MEDLINE and GOOGLE.

Results: In mild-to-moderate disease, topical therapy should be a first-line treatment. In moderate-to-severe disease, first-line treatment is acitretin with narrow band ultraviolet light (NBUVB), NBUVB, or acitretin. Second-line treatment is increasing the current antirejection drug dose. Other systemic or biologic therapies should be reserved for more severe or refractory cases.

Conclusion: No systematic clinical studies have been done to explore psoriasis treatments among affected solid organ transplant patients who have psoriasis, and only a few case reports are available. The algorithm for best practices was developed based on these reports and on the clinical experience and judgment of the Medical Board of the National Psoriasis Foundation. There remains a need for further research on the management of psoriasis in the organ transplant patient population.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09546634.2017.1373737DOI Listing
June 2018

Association Between Skin and Aortic Vascular Inflammation in Patients With Psoriasis: A Case-Cohort Study Using Positron Emission Tomography/Computed Tomography.

JAMA Cardiol 2017 09;2(9):1013-1018

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland.

Importance: Inflammation is critical in the development of atherosclerosis. Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory skin disease that is associated with increased vascular inflammation by 18fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography/computed tomography in vivo and future cardiovascular events. It provides a human model to understand the effect of treating inflammation in a target organ (eg, the skin) on vascular diseases.

Objective: To investigate the association between change in skin disease severity and change in vascular inflammation at 1 year and to characterize the impact of 1 year of anti-tumor necrosis factor therapy on vascular inflammation.

Design, Setting, And Participants: In this prospective cohort study, 220 participants from outpatient practices were recruited at the US National Institutes of Health. A total of 115 consecutively recruited patients with psoriasis were followed up at 1 year. The study was conducted from January 1, 2013, through October 31, 2016, with data analyzed in November 2016.

Exposure: Skin inflammation measured as Psoriasis Area and Severity Index (PASI) score.

Main Outcomes And Measures: Vascular inflammation assessed as target-to-background ratio by 18fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography/computed tomography.

Results: Among the 115 patients, the mean (SD) age at 1-year follow-up was 50.8 (12.8) years and 68 were men (59%). The cohort had a low cardiovascular risk by Framingham risk score and mild-to-moderate psoriasis, with a median PASI score of 5.2 (interquartile range, 3.0-8.9). At follow-up, the total cohort had a median improvement in PASI score of 33%, with use of topical therapy (60%), biological therapy (66%, mostly anti-tumor necrosis factor) and phototherapy (15%) (P < .001). Moreover, improvement in PASI score was associated with improvement in target-to-background ratio of 6%, mainly driven by those with higher responses in PASI score (P < .001). This association persisted beyond traditional risk factors (β = 0.19; 95% CI, 0.012-0.375; P = .03) and was the strongest in those initiated with anti-tumor necrosis factor therapy (β = 0.79; 95% CI, 0.269-1.311; P = .03).

Conclusions And Relevance: Improvement in psoriasis skin disease severity was associated with improvement in aortic vascular inflammation by 18fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography/computed tomography, with greater improvement in aortic vascular inflammation observed in those who had higher than 75% reduction in skin disease severity. These findings suggest that controlling remote target organ inflammation (eg, in the skin) may improve vascular diseases; however, randomized clinical trials are needed to confirm these findings.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jamacardio.2017.1213DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5815046PMC
September 2017

From the Medical Board of the National Psoriasis Foundation: Treatment targets for plaque psoriasis.

J Am Acad Dermatol 2017 Feb 28;76(2):290-298. Epub 2016 Nov 28.

Eastern Virginia Medical School, Norfolk, Virginia.

Background: An urgent need exists in the United States to establish treatment goals in psoriasis.

Objective: We aim to establish defined treatment targets toward which clinicians and patients with psoriasis can strive to inform treatment decisions, reduce disease burden, and improve outcomes in practice.

Methods: The National Psoriasis Foundation conducted a consensus-building study among psoriasis experts using the Delphi method. The process consisted of: (1) literature review, (2) pre-Delphi question selection and input from general dermatologists and patients, and (3) 4 Delphi rounds.

Results: A total of 25 psoriasis experts participated in the Delphi process. The most preferred instrument was body surface area (BSA). The most preferred time for evaluating patient response after starting new therapies was at 3 months. The acceptable response at 3 months postinitiation was either BSA 3% or less or BSA improvement 75% or more from baseline. The target response at 3 months postinitiation was BSA 1% or less. During the maintenance period, evaluation every 6 months was most preferred. The target response at every 6 months maintenance evaluation is BSA 1% or less.

Limitations: Although BSA is feasible in practice, it does not encompass health-related quality of life, costs, and risks of side effects.

Conclusion: With defined treatment targets, clinicians and patients can regularly evaluate treatment responses and perform benefit-risk assessments of therapeutic options individualized to the patient.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jaad.2016.10.017DOI Listing
February 2017

Severity of Psoriasis Associates With Aortic Vascular Inflammation Detected by FDG PET/CT and Neutrophil Activation in a Prospective Observational Study.

Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol 2015 Dec 8;35(12):2667-76. Epub 2015 Oct 8.

From the Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Branch, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (H.B.N., B.N., E.S., H.T., T.S., Q.N., A.A.J., J.D., S.M.R., J.D., M.P.P., N.N.M.), Dermatology Branch, Center for Cancer Research, National Cancer Institute (H.B.N.), Molecular Biomedical Imaging Laboratory (M.A.A.), and Systemic Autoimmunity Branch, National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (M.J.K.), National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD; Englewood Hospital, NJ (P.K.); The Washington Dermatology Center, Rockville, MD (R.B.P.); Department of Dermatology, George Washington Hospital, Washington DC (R.B.P., A.E.); DermAssociates, Silver Spring, MD (B.N.L.); and Department of Dermatology, Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology, and Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia (J.M.G.).

Objective: To understand whether directly measured psoriasis severity is associated with vascular inflammation assessed by (18)F-fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography computed tomography.

Approach: In-depth cardiovascular and metabolic phenotyping was performed in adult psoriasis patients (n=60) and controls (n=20). Psoriasis severity was measured using psoriasis area severity index. Vascular inflammation was measured using average aortic target-to-background ratio using (18)F-fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography computed tomography.

Results: Both the psoriasis patients (28 men and 32 women, mean age 47 years) and controls (13 men and 7 women, mean age 41 years) were young with low cardiovascular risk. Psoriasis area severity index scores (median 5.4; interquartile range 2.8-8.3) were consistent with mild-to-moderate skin disease severity. Increasing psoriasis area severity index score was associated with an increase in aortic target-to-background ratio (β=0.41, P=0.001), an association that changed little after adjustment for age, sex, and Framingham risk score. We observed evidence of increased neutrophil frequency (mean psoriasis, 3.7±1.2 versus 2.9±1.2; P=0.02) and activation by lower neutrophil surface CD16 and CD62L in blood. Serum levels of S100A8/A9 (745.1±53.3 versus 195.4±157.8 ng/mL; P<0.01) and neutrophil elastase-1 (43.0±2.4 versus 30.8±6.7 ng/mL; P<0.001) were elevated in psoriasis. Finally, S100A8/A9 protein was related to both psoriasis skin disease severity (β=0.53; P=0.02) and vascular inflammation (β=0.48; P=0.02).

Conclusions: Psoriasis severity is associated with vascular inflammation beyond cardiovascular risk factors. Psoriasis increased neutrophil activation and neutrophil markers, and S100A8/A9 was related to both skin disease severity and vascular inflammation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/ATVBAHA.115.306460DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4662627PMC
December 2015

Efficacy of Adalimumab Compared With Methotrexate or Placebo Stratified by Baseline BMI in a Randomized Placebo-Controlled Trial in Patients With Psoriasis.

J Drugs Dermatol 2015 Aug;14(8):864-8

Introduction: In the Comparative Study of Humira vs Methotrexate vs Placebo In Psoriasis Patients (CHAMPION) study, significantly more patients achieved ≥75% improvement in the Psoriasis Area and Severity Index (PASI75) and ≥90% improvement (PASI90) after 16 weeks of treatment with adalimumab (80 mg at week 0, then 40 mg every other week starting at week 1) compared with methotrexate (up to 25 mg/week orally) or placebo. In this exploratory analysis, the efficacy of adalimumab was evaluated in a subset of the CHAMPION patient population stratified by baseline body mass index (BMI).

Methods: PASI responses and Dermatology Life Quality Index (DLQI) scores through 16 weeks of treatment were examined by baseline BMI category (<25 kg/m2 [normal], 25 to <30 kg/m2 [overweight], and ≥30 kg/m2 [obese]) in patients with psoriasis with a baseline PASI total score ≥12. Treatment differences between the adalimumab and the methotrexate or placebo groups were compared using Fisher's exact test for PASI responses and 1-way analysis of variance for DLQI scores.

Results: In all BMI categories, adalimumab treatment led to significantly greater rates of PASI75/90 responses at weeks 12 and 16 compared with methotrexate or placebo (P<0.05 for all). In normal weight, overweight, and obese patients at week 16, the respective PASI75 response rates were 85.0%, 85.7%, and 61.3% with adalimumab; 43.3%, 29.3%, and 26.1% with methotrexate; and 28.6%, 16.7%, and 0% with placebo. PASI90 response rates were 70.0%, 53.6%, and 35.5% with adalimumab; 26.7%, 7.3%, and 8.7% with methotrexate; and 9.5%, 16.7%, and 0% with placebo. Across all BMI subgroups, the greatest decreases in DLQI scores from baseline occurred in the adalimumab group.

Conclusion: Significantly higher PASI75/90 response rates and more pronounced improvements in DLQI scores at week 16 were identified in patients treated with adalimumab, compared with methotrexate or placebo, regardless of baseline BMI category.
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August 2015

Nonalcoholic Fatty liver disease and psoriasis: what a dermatologist needs to know.

J Clin Aesthet Dermatol 2015 Mar;8(3):43-5

Washington Dermatology Center, Rockville, Maryland;

Psoriasis is a systemic inflammatory disease associated with a variety of comorbidities. It has been shown that psoriasis patients have an increased incidence of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease over controls. Patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease and psoriasis have more severe skin disease and are at higher risk of severe liver fibrosis than patients without psoriasis. The authors will review the diagnosis of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease and also discuss lifestyle changes and treatments for psoriasis that may benefit or worsen nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4382145PMC
March 2015

Psoriasis Improvement in Patients Using Glutathione-enhancing, Nondenatured Whey Protein Isolate: A Pilot Study.

J Clin Aesthet Dermatol 2013 Oct;6(10):23-6

Washington Dermatology Center, North Bethesda, Maryland; ; Assistant Clinical Professor, George Washington University, Washington, DC;

Background: Psoriasis is a common autoimmune disease with enhanced systemic inflammation and heightened levels of oxidative stress. Glutathione is the major antioxidant in human cells.

Objectives: To determine if a nondenatured bioactive whey protein isolate previously demonstrated to increase glutathione levels can clinically improve patients with psoriasis vulgaris.

Methods: A single site, prospective, non-blinded trial. Seven patients with psoriasis were recruited to take a nondenatured bioactive whey protein isolate, 20g orally per day, in addition to their current treatments, if any. Psoriasis Area and Severity Index scores and photographs were taken at baseline and monthly for three months.

Results: Patients with psoriasis were found to have a beneficial clinical improvement, whether they were on existing topical therapy, narrowband ultraviolet B, or no other treatment.

Conclusion: The positive preliminary outcomes from this pilot study suggest a randomized, double-blind, clinical trial would be worthwhile in evaluating whether this protein isolate would result in statistically significant improvement for patients with psoriasis.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3805302PMC
October 2013
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