Further research

is needed to determine why IFN produces

Further research

is needed to determine why IFN produces opposite effects in UC. Existing data suggest two possible reasons for these conflicting results: (i) differences in the balance of T helper cell 1 (Th1) and T helper cell 2 (Th2) associated with population differences in bodyweight, body surface area and body mass index (BMI); and (ii) differences in the time of IFN treatment initiation. The cause of UC remains unclear; however, Th1/Th2 imbalance is thought to be involved. The Th1 cells produce interleukin (IL)-2 and IFN-γ, and the Th2 cells produce IL-3, IL-4, IL-5, IL-6, IL-10, and IL-13, promoting cellular immunity versus humoral immunity. Th1/Th2 imbalance is strongly correlated with numerous diseases.34 For example, Crohn’s AUY-922 solubility dmso disease is associated with Th1 cell expression, whereas UC is associated with Th2 cell expression.35 Th2 dominance is associated with chronic hepatitis C34,36 and conventional MS, whereas opticospinal MS is thought to be associated with Th1 dominance.37 In addition to Th1 and Th2, Th17 cells producing tumor necrosis BMS-777607 order factor (TNF)-α, IL-17, IL-21, and IL-22 were recently discovered. This finding may provide additional insight into the causes of autoimmune diseases, rheumatoid arthritis in particular.38 IFN-β–induced remission of UC was reported in a patient with chronic hepatitis

C,39 and the peripheral Th1/Th2 ratio was decreased in a similar case.40 Ning et al. recently reported that IFN-β-1a suppresses inflammation in UC, and this effect is accompanied by the inhibition of IL-13 production.41 Furthermore, pretreating transgenic mice with a Lactobacillus strain that expresses IFN-β upregulated TNF-α, IFN-γ, IL-17A, and IL-13 in intestinal tissues.42 Accordingly, interest in the effects of IL-13 and IL-17 on the development or exacerbation of UC, or recovery or remission from UC, has

increased. Földes et al. reported that RIB alters the Th1/Th2 balance, inducing resistance to the hepatitis C virus by cellular immune processes.43 They previously reported that RIB inhibits viral-induced macrophage production of TNF, IL-1, and the procoagulant fgl2 prothrombinase, preserving Th1 cytokine production but inhibiting the Th2 cytokine response.43 Thus, the imbalance of Th1/Th2 may explain, at least in part, the effect of IFN and/or RIB on UC. However, prospective studies are needed to elucidate the role of Th1/Th2 balance Beta adrenergic receptor kinase in patients with UC caused by IFN therapy. Despite fears that PEG-IFN may exert a stronger effect on the immune system because its use produces higher levels in the blood than standard IFN treatment,10,13 the incidence of thyroid dysfunction is similar between patients treated with each form of IFN.27 Therefore, the risk associated with PEG-IFN does not appear to be higher than that of standard IFN.27 However, combination therapy consisting of PEG-IFN and RIB may have stronger additive or synergistic effects on immunomodulation than RIB combined with standard IFN.10,13 Carella et al.

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