Current therapies for Crohn disease and ulcerative colitis—including
anti-inflammatory agents, aminosalicylates, and corticosteroids—lack
specificity and effectiveness. But promising results are coming out of clinical
trials of targeted biological therapies for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD),
such as monoclonal antibodies, that inhibit key immune and inflammatory mediators.
Research by basic scientists is beginning to make it possible to "to
tease apart how the inflammatory cascade works in the intestines and other
parts of the body," said James Lewis, MD, who moderated a press briefing on
results of clinical trials presented at the Digestive Disease Week, in New
Orleans in May. The translation of that basic science into patient trials
has "potentially great prospects for the future of diagnosing, treating, and
potentially preventing IBD," added Lewis, of the University of Pennsylvania
School of Medicine, Philadelphia.
Hampton T. Monoclonal Antibodies Target Inflammatory Bowel Disease. JAMA. 2004;292(1):29-30. doi:10.1001/jama.292.1.29