Biologic response modifiers: Indications, implications, and insights

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The field of biologic immune modulators is currently mushrooming at a dizzying pace. Although most of these biologics are tested and approved for one or a few indications, their unanticipated side effects and off-label use have contributed significantly to our understanding of basic immune mechanisms, the involvement of cytokines in several apparently nonimmunologic diseases, and the importance of compartmentalized immune responses. In this review we attempt to give a bird's-eye view of the major biologics and to highlight insights and implications derived from their secondary effects and adverse reactions.

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