Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic multi-system autoimmune disease with extremely complex pathogenesis. Significantly altered lipid paradox related to the inflammatory burden is reported in RA patients, inducing 50% higher cardiovascular risks. Recent studies have also demonstrated that lipid metabolism can regulate many functions of immune cells in which metabolic pathways have altered. The nuclear liver X receptors (LXRs), including LXRα and LXRβ, play a central role in regulating lipid homeostasis and inflammatory responses. Undoubtedly, LXRs have been considered as an attractive therapeutic target for the treatment of RA. However, there are some contradictory effects of LXRs agonists observed in previous animal studies where both pro-inflammatory role and anti-inflammatory role were revealed for LXRs activation in RA. Therefore, in addition to updating the knowledge of LXRs as the prominent regulators of lipid homeostasis, the purpose of this review is to summarize the effects of LXRs agonists in RA-associated immune cells, to explore the underlying reasons for the contradictory therapeutic effects of LXRs agonists observed in RA animal models, and to discuss future strategy for the treatment of RA with LXRs modulators.
Copyright © 2021. Published by Elsevier Ltd.