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Archived Comments for: Th17-related cytokines: new players in the control of chronic intestinal inflammation

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  1. Th17-Related Cytokines Important

    Carr Smith, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine

    19 January 2012

    The article on Th17-related cytokines by Monteleone et al. (BMC Med 2011, 9:122) is very important. While TNF-alpha blockers and other immunosupressants do much to alleviate the symptoms of Crohn's Disease, remission does not usually occur. Many patients still suffer some level of GI discomfort or bleeding, and sometimes arthralgia which can be severe. The localization of new molecular pathways for Crohn's therapy holds forth the promise of eventually figuring out the critical pro- and anti-inflammatory signals that sustain gut inflammation. The complexity of this article indirectly points out the technical difficulty of designing human clinical trials for new Crohn's drugs optimized by patient enrollment criteria and number, stage of disease presentation, and ongoing level of GI tract inflammation. A better understanding of the inflammatory mechanisms underlying this serious disease is the best way to design smart therapies aimed at specific cytokines and their receptors.

    Competing interests

    None declared