Biotechnological monoclonal antibodies and receptor antagonists capable of targeting specific inflammatory actors, such as cytokines, cytokines receptors, co-stimulatory molecules or leukocyte populations, have emerged as an alternative to conventional therapies for treating systemic inflammatory diseases with immune pathogenesis. However, there is no doubt that, with a frequency that is not exceptionally high but also not negligible, immunotherapies can favour the development of systemic and organ-specific immune-mediated disorders. It has become increasingly evident that interference with a specific immune pathway may favour the activation of opposing compensatory signalling, which may exacerbate underlying subclinical disorders or cause immune-mediated diseases completely different from the underlying disease. The 'compensatory immunological switch' has emerged primarily in patients treated with tumor necrosis factor (TNF) -α inhibitors, the first biological drugs approved for treating systemic inflammatory diseases with immune pathogenesis. In this Review, we describe the clinical features and predisposing factors of the main TNF-α inhibitor-related autoimmune disorders, organising them into subclinical serological autoimmunity, autoimmune disorders other than those for which TNF-α inhibitors are indicated, and paradoxical reactions. We also discuss the underlying pathogenetic mechanisms and precautions for use in the therapeutic management of these patients. Better understanding of the complex phenomenon of the 'compensatory immunological switch', which TNF-α inhibitors and other biological drugs might trigger, can help not only appropriately managing immune-mediated disorders, but also better interpreting the heterogeneity of the pathogenetic mechanisms underlying certain chronic inflammatory conditions that, although different from each other, are arbitrarily placed in the context of overly generic nosological entities.

Tumor necrosis factor-α inhibitor-related autoimmune disorders

De Stefano, Ludovico
;
Pallavicini, Francesca Bobbio;Mauric, Eleonora;Piccin, Veronica;Vismara, Enrico Maria;Montecucco, Carlomaurizio;Bugatti, Serena
2023-01-01

Abstract

Biotechnological monoclonal antibodies and receptor antagonists capable of targeting specific inflammatory actors, such as cytokines, cytokines receptors, co-stimulatory molecules or leukocyte populations, have emerged as an alternative to conventional therapies for treating systemic inflammatory diseases with immune pathogenesis. However, there is no doubt that, with a frequency that is not exceptionally high but also not negligible, immunotherapies can favour the development of systemic and organ-specific immune-mediated disorders. It has become increasingly evident that interference with a specific immune pathway may favour the activation of opposing compensatory signalling, which may exacerbate underlying subclinical disorders or cause immune-mediated diseases completely different from the underlying disease. The 'compensatory immunological switch' has emerged primarily in patients treated with tumor necrosis factor (TNF) -α inhibitors, the first biological drugs approved for treating systemic inflammatory diseases with immune pathogenesis. In this Review, we describe the clinical features and predisposing factors of the main TNF-α inhibitor-related autoimmune disorders, organising them into subclinical serological autoimmunity, autoimmune disorders other than those for which TNF-α inhibitors are indicated, and paradoxical reactions. We also discuss the underlying pathogenetic mechanisms and precautions for use in the therapeutic management of these patients. Better understanding of the complex phenomenon of the 'compensatory immunological switch', which TNF-α inhibitors and other biological drugs might trigger, can help not only appropriately managing immune-mediated disorders, but also better interpreting the heterogeneity of the pathogenetic mechanisms underlying certain chronic inflammatory conditions that, although different from each other, are arbitrarily placed in the context of overly generic nosological entities.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11571/1478934
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