Fibroblast-like synoviocytes (FLSs) are key effector cells in the pathogenesis of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and display a unique aggressive tumor-like phenotype with remarkable hyperplasia, increased cell migration and invasion. How FLSs undergo these changes in RA remains unknown. We previously reported a novel function of transcription factor SOX5 in RA-FLSs that promote cell migration and invasion. In this study, we found that miR-15a/16 directly targets the SOX5 3’UTR and suppresses SOX5 expression. Moreover, miR-15a/16 is significantly down-regulated in RA-FLSs, which negatively correlates with SOX5 expression. Transfection with miR-15a/16 mimics in RA-FLSs inhibits cell migration, invasion, IL-1β and TNFα expression. Overexpression SOX5 in RA-FLSs decreases miR-15a/16 expression and rescues miR-15a/16-mediated inhibitory effect. Furthermore, RA patients with the lower baseline serum miR-15a/16 level present poor response of 3 months disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) therapy. Collectively, this study reveals that miR-15a/16/SOX5 axis functions as a key driver of RA-FLSs invasion, migration and inflammatory response in a mutual negative feedback loop and correlates with DMARDs treatment response in RA.