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This article is part of the supplement: Current perspectives on the treatment of rheumatic diseases with infliximab

Supplement

How does infliximab work in rheumatoid arthritis?

Ravinder N Maini* and Marc Feldmann

Author Affiliations

The Kennedy Institute of Rheumatology Division, Imperial College of Science Technology and Medicine, London, UK

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Arthritis Res 2002, 4(Suppl 2):S22-S28  doi:10.1186/ar549

Published: 27 March 2002

Abstract

Since the initial characterization of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFα), it has become clear that TNFα has diverse biologic activity. The realization that TNFα plays a role in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) has led to the development of anti-TNF agents for the treatment of RA. Infliximab, a chimeric monoclonal antibody that specifically, and with high affinity, binds to TNFα and neutralizes the cytokine, is currently approved for the treatment of RA and Crohn's disease, another immune-inflammatory disorder. In addition to establishing the safety and efficacy of infliximab, clinical research has also provided insights into the complex cellular and cytokine-dependent pathways involved in the pathophysiology of RA, including evidence that supports TNFα involvement in cytokine regulation, cell recruitment, angiogenesis, and tissue destruction.

Keywords:
infliximab; rheumatoid arthritis; signaling pathways; tumor necrosis factor