Cytokine-based therapies in inflammatory bowel disease

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Cytokine-based therapy for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) has significantly advanced in the last year. This review highlights some of the exciting progress that has occurred. The efficacy of anti–tumor necrosis factor (TNF) monoclonal antibody therapy in Crohn’s disease has promoted further research and the development of other anti-TNF therapies, such as thalidomide, phosphodiesterase type IV inhibitors, and new-generation anti-TNF monoclonal antibodies. Current research is also focused on more proximal events in the inflammatory cascade to modify T-cell regulation and to decrease the production and activity of proinflammatory proteins, cytokines, and nuclear regulatory factors. Concurrently, the emerging role of interleukin (IL)-11, IL-12, and IL-18 in the perpetuation of chronic inflammation continues to stimulate much interest. All of these new advancements reveal an exciting future for IBD therapy.

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