Crohn's disease

Giulia Roda, Siew Chien Ng, Paulo Gustavo Kotze, Marjorie Argollo, Remo Panaccione, Antonino Spinelli, Arthur Kaser, Laurent Peyrin-Biroulet, Silvio Danese

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Crohn's disease is an inflammatory bowel disease that is characterized by chronic inflammation of any part of the gastrointestinal tract, has a progressive and destructive course and is increasing in incidence worldwide. Several factors have been implicated in the cause of Crohn's disease, including a dysregulated immune system, an altered microbiota, genetic susceptibility and environmental factors, but the cause of the disease remains unknown. The onset of the disease at a young age in most cases necessitates prompt but long-term treatment to prevent disease flares and disease progression with intestinal complications. Thus, earlier, more aggressive treatment with biologic therapies or novel small molecules could profoundly change the natural history of the disease and decrease complications and the need for hospitalization and surgery. Although less invasive biomarkers are in development, diagnosis still relies on endoscopy and histological assessment of biopsy specimens. Crohn's disease is a complex disease, and treatment should be personalized to address the underlying pathogenetic mechanism. In the future, disease management might rely on severity scores that incorporate prognostic factors, bowel damage assessment and non-invasive close monitoring of disease activity to reduce the severity of complications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)22
JournalNature reviews. Disease primers
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2 2020


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