Anti-adhesion molecule therapies in inflammatory bowel disease: Touch and go

Tommaso Stefanelli, Alberto Malesci, Sarah A. De La Rue, Silvio Danese

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Exploration of the mechanisms underlying the inflammatory bowel diseases [N. Mori, Y. Horie, M.E. Gerritsen, D.C. Anderson, D.N. Granger, Anti-inflammatory drugs and endothelial cell adhesion molecule expression in murine vascular beds. Gut 1999;44:186-95] is a leading field of medical research that drives the application of biological therapies to human diseases. Indeed, many inflammatory mediators can be targeted in the gut by monoclonal antibodies. A recent direction for these therapeutics is targeting of the adhesion molecule family. This molecule family mediates the adhesion and extravasation of leukocytes through the endothelium at sites of inflammation. This is a complex multistep process that has been extensively investigated in recent years; thanks to these studies some adhesion molecules have been identified to specifically mediate leukocyte migration to gut inflammatory sites, like α4β7 integrin. This review outlines the scientific basis behind this therapeutic approach, and describes the principal clinical studies that have been carried out on these new molecules in patients with IBD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)364-369
Number of pages6
JournalAutoimmunity Reviews
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2008


  • Anti αβ integrin therapy
  • Cell adhesion molecules
  • Crohn's Disease
  • Ulcerative Colitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Immunology and Allergy


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