The study, conducted by the team at the University of Oxford, found that variations in the gene ALDH1A2 increase the risk of hand OA and that people with this gene had low levels of retinoic acid. This led to the testing of talarozole, a drug not currently approved to treat any condition, as a potential treatment. Talarozole was found to successfully reduce inflammation in mice knee joints and cartilage degradation in pig joints. As a result, the team are now working to translate their findings into clinical application with the hope that talarozole, or similar compounds, can be used to manage OA in the future.
Although the results of this study are promising, there is still a need for further clinical research in order to assess the efficacy of talarozole in the treatment of OA. Until then, it is not known whether talarozole will become a viable treatment for OA. Until then, OA sufferers can continue to manage their condition through other treatments including exercise, physiotherapy, and medications.