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December 7, 2011

Is Anti-TNF Therapy Safer Than Previously Thought?

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Arthritis Research UK Epidemiology Unit, University of Manchester, Manchester, England; and Clinical Epidemiology Unit, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston Massachusetts.

JAMA. 2011;306(21):2380-2381. doi:10.1001/jama.2011.1705

Anti–tumor necrosis factor (TNF) therapy has revolutionized the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and other inflammatory diseases over the last decade. However, because TNF has important physiological roles such as host defense and tumor surveillance, anti-TNF therapy has been subject to rigorous postmarketing safety assessment. In this issue of JAMA, Grijalva and colleagues1 report results from an analysis of data combined from 4 large US administrative databases within the Safety Assessment of Biologic Therapy (SABER) project that question the accepted notion that anti-TNF therapy confers an increased risk of serious infection.