They hope the analysis will help future research.
He added: “This is a significant step forward in our understanding of osteoarthritis, a complex and debilitating disease which has a major socio-economic impact.
“However, the discovery is just the first step in a long process that may lead to developing new drugs and treatments that are targeted to each group.”
“The disease has many clinical criteria and treating it as a single disease has become recognised as unproductive.
“So any new treatments which delayed the onset, or reduced progression of osteoarthritis in either group, would relieve much patient suffering and reduce the healthcare burden.”
Dr Natalie Carter, head of research liaison and evaluation at Arthritis Research UK, comments:
“We know that millions of people live with the daily pain of osteoarthritis. This, coupled with stiffness and fatigue, can make everyday life difficult, limiting a person’s ability to get dressed, go to work or even climb the stairs.
Although it’s still very early days, this study is good news for people with osteoarthritis and helps us to build on our understanding of the condition. We welcome more research, like this study, that has the potential to improve the way we understand, diagnose and treat osteoarthritis and so that people with arthritis can live the pain free life they deserve.”
“Osteoarthritis –Two major disease subsets identified by genome-wide expression analysis” is published online in Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases.