Positioning ustekinumab in moderate-to-severe ulcerative colitis: new kid on the block

Fiorino G1,2, Allocca M1,2, Correale C1, Roda G1, Furfaro F1, Loy L1, Zilli A1, Peyrin-Biroulet L3, Danese S1,2. Expert Opin Biol Ther. 2020 Feb 13:1-7. doi: 10.1080/14712598.2020.1727437. [Epub ahead of print]


Author information

1 IBD Center, Department of Gastroenterology, Humanitas Clinical and Research Institute, Milan, Italy.

2 Department of Biomedical Sciences, Humanitas University, Milan, Italy.

3 Department of Hepato-Gastroenterology and Inserm U954, University Hospital of Nancy, Lorraine University, Vandoeuvre-lès-Nancy, France.


Introduction: Ulcerative colitis (UC) is a chronic relapsing disorder of the colonic tract. Dysregulated innate and adaptive immune pathways contribute to intestinal inflammation in IBD, and cytokines, including IL-12 and IL-23, play a key role. The blockade of both IL-12 and IL-23 may have an impact on different pathways of inflammation and could be effective for the treatment of inflammatory bowel diseases.Ustekinumab is a fully human IgG1κ monoclonal antibody which binds to the shared p40 protein subunit of IL-12 and -23. It is currently approved for several immune-mediated diseases such as moderate to severe plaque psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis, and Crohn's disease, and has shown promising results in UC.Areas covered: A review of the literature was performed to understand several aspects including the role of IL-12 and -23 in UC, the potential therapeutic role of ustekinumab in inflammatory bowel disease, and the positioning of ustekinumab in the therapeutic algorithm of UC, based on extrapolated data from available randomized clinical trials.Expert opinion: Ustekinumab is effective and safe in UC, and shows potential advantages compared to other drugs in moderate-to-severe UC.

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