Increased levels of NF-κB inhibitors (IκBα and IκBγ) in the intestinal mucosa of Crohn's disease patients during infliximab treatment

Luisa Guidi, M. Costanzo, M. Ciarniello, I. De Vitis, C. Pioli, L. Gatta, L. Pace, A. Tricerri, C. Bartoloni, L. Coppola, P. Balistreri, G. Doria, G. Fedeli, G.B. Gasbarrini

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25 Citations (Scopus)


The treatment with infliximab is employed successfully in Crohn's disease (CD) but predictors of efficacy are lacking. Activation of the transcription factor NF-kB has been demonstrated in CD and its inhibition is one of the mechanisms by which anti-inflammatory agents exert their effects. We evaluated the production of TNFα by peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) and the levels of NF-κB family molecules in the intestinal mucosa during infliximab therapy in 12 patients. TNFα was assayed on supernatants of PBMC culture stimulated with PHA or LPS. Immunohistochemistry was also done on intestinal biopsies. In six patients, Western blot analysis of the NF-kB subunit Rel-A, and its inhibitors IκBα and IκBγ was performed on intestinal biopsies and PBMC. The TNFα production by LPS stimulated PBMC showed mild changes, while it was increased by PHA-stimulated PBMC after treatment. The number of inflammatory cells in the intestinal mucosa was reduced (p<0.002) by the treatment. In five out of six cases we detected an increase of the IκBα and IκBγ inhibitor levels in intestinal biopsies after treatment. An increase of IκB inhibitors levels could be one of the mechanisms by which infliximab decreases NF-κB activity and exerts its anti-inflammatory effects.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)155 - 164
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Immunopathology and Pharmacology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2005
Externally publishedYes


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Pharmacology

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