Achieving mucosal healing in inflammatory bowel diseases: which drug concentrations need to be targeted?

Van den Berghe N1, Gils A1, Thomas D1. Clin Pharmacol Ther. 2019 Aug 16. doi: 10.1002/cpt.1609. [Epub ahead of print]


Author information

1 Laboratory for Therapeutic and Diagnostic Antibodies, Department of Pharmaceutical and Pharmacological Sciences, KU Leuven, Leuven, Belgium.


Biologicals introduced a major shift in the treatment of patients suffering from inflammatory bowel diseases. Despite providing a tight disease control for many patients, a considerable proportion of patients will fail to respond favorably to treatment or will lose response over time. Therapeutic drug monitoring emerged as a valuable tool to guide clinical decision-making as serum drug concentrations have been linked to outcomes. Focusing on mucosal healing as the ultimate treatment goal, different drug concentration thresholds to achieve this outcome have been identified in the literature and are summarized in this review. For therapeutic drug monitoring to be successful in guiding clinical decision-making, the used assay, the sampling time point and the outcome that is aimed for should be taken into account when interpreting drug concentration thresholds. Awareness of these essential aspects among clinicians will improve the implementation of therapeutic drug monitoring and aid in making an evidence-based decision.

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