PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Giant cell arteritis (GCA) and Takayasu arteritis (TAK) are auto-inflammatory and autoimmune diseases with a highly selective tissue tropism for medium and large arteries. In both diseases, CD4+ T cells and macrophages form granulomatous lesions within the arterial wall, a tissue site normally protected by immune privilege. Vascular lesions can be accompanied by an extravascular component, typically an intense hepatic acute phase response that produces well-known laboratory abnormalities, e.g., elevated ESR and CRP. It is unclear whether GCA and TAK lie on a spectrum of disease or whether they represent fundamentally different disease processes.RECENT FINDINGS: GCA and TAK share many clinical features, but there are substantial differences in genetics, epidemiology, disease mechanisms, response to treatment, and treatment complications that give rise to different disease trajectories. A significant difference lies in the composition of the wall-infiltrating immune cell compartment, which in TAK includes a significant population of CD8+ T cells as well as natural killer cells, specifying disparate disease effector pathways mediating tissue damage and vessel wall remodeling. Despite the similarities in tissue tropism and histomorphology, GCA and TAK are two distinct vasculitides that rely on separate disease mechanisms and require disease-specific approaches in diagnosis and management.
View details for DOI 10.1007/s11926-020-00948-x
View details for PubMedID 32845392