Disease Modifying Anti-rheumatic Drugs,DMARDs Infliximab Medicine Pharmacology Physiotherapy

Infliximab (Mechanism of Action)

In this article we will discuss Infliximab (Mechanism of Action)

In this article, we will discuss Infliximab (Mechanism of Action). So, let’s get started.

Mechanism of Action

Infliximab neutralizes the biological activity of TNFα by binding with high affinity to the soluble and transmembrane forms of TNFα and inhibits binding of TNFα with its receptors. Infliximab does not neutralize TNFβ (lymphotoxin-α), a related cytokine that utilizes the same
receptors as TNFα. Biological activities attributed to TNFα include: induction of pro-inflammatory cytokines such as interleukins (IL) 1 and 6, enhancement of leukocyte migration by increasing endothelial layer permeability and expression of adhesion molecules by endothelial cells and leukocytes, activation of neutrophil and eosinophil functional activity, induction of acute phase reactants and other liver proteins, as well as tissue degrading enzymes produced by synoviocytes and/or chondrocytes. Cells expressing transmembrane TNFα bound by infliximab can be lysed in vitro or in vivo. Infliximab inhibits the functional activity of TNFα in a wide variety of in vitro bioassays utilizing human fibroblasts, endothelial cells, neutrophils, B and T-lymphocytes and epithelial cells. The relationship of these biological response markers to the mechanism(s) by which Infliximab exerts its clinical effects is unknown. Anti-TNFα antibodies reduce disease activity in the cotton-top tamarin colitis model, and decrease synovitis and joint erosions in a murine model of collagen-induced arthritis. Infliximab prevents disease in transgenic mice that develop polyarthritis as a result of constitutive expression of human TNFα, and when administered after disease onset, allows eroded joints to heal.


Elevated concentrations of TNFα have been found in involved tissues and fluids of patients with rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, ankylosing spondylitis, psoriatic arthritis and plaque psoriasis. In rheumatoid arthritis, treatment with Infliximab reduced infiltration of inflammatory cells into inflamed areas of the joint as well as expression of molecules mediating cellular adhesion [E-selectin, intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) and vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1)], chemoattraction [IL-8 and monocyte chemotactic protein (MCP-1)] and tissue degradation [matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) 1 and 3]. In Crohn’s disease treatment with Infliximab reduced infiltration of inflammatory cells and TNFα production in inflamed areas of the intestine, and reduced the proportion of mononuclear cells from the lamina
propria able to express TNFα and interferon. After treatment with Infliximab, patients with rheumatoid arthritis or Crohn’s disease exhibited decreased levels of serum IL-6 and C-reactive protein (CRP) compared to baseline. Peripheral blood lymphocytes from Infliximab-treated patients showed no significant decrease in number or in proliferative responses to in vitro mitogenic stimulation when compared to cells from untreated patients. In psoriatic arthritis, treatment with Infliximab resulted in a reduction in the number of T-cells and blood vessels in the synovium and psoriatic skin lesions as well as a reduction of macrophages in the synovium. In plaque psoriasis, Infliximab treatment may reduce the epidermal thickness and infiltration of inflammatory cells. The relationship between these pharmacodynamic activities and the
mechanism(s) by which Infliximab exerts its clinical effects is unknown.

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