Cystic fibrosis (CF) is the most common life-threatening autosomal recessive disease in Caucasian children; it has an incidence of 1 case in every 2500 children born alive. CF involves an anomalous function of the exocrine glands, caused by a mutation of a gene (cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator, CFTR) located on chromosome 7, which codes for a protein involved in ion transport through the cell membrane. Pulmonary complications are the most common causes of mortal¬ity, but the presenting symptoms are very often linked to gastrointestinal and pancreatic biliary diseases. These are mainly caused by the unusual viscosity of the secretions in hollow organs and in the ducts of solid organs. Crohn's dis¬ease (CD) is a chronic inflammatory bowel disease which may be localized throughout the gastrointestinal tract. The association between CD and CF is known; there are reports of a prevalence of CD in patients suffering from CF 17 times higher than in controls.
A research article to be published on April 21, 2010 in the World Journal of Gastroenterology addresses this question. A research team led by Professor Gian Luigi de' Angelis, reported the first case of a patient with CF and CD treated with infliximab.
After initiation of infliximab in this patient, there was an improvement of colonic lesions and general condition without any infective complication and particularly without any decline of lung function.
This report confirms the preliminary data regarding the possibility that airway inflammation in CF plays a crucial role in lung damage and that the inflammation is mediated by tumor necrosis factor alpha. Therefore, the use of anti-tumor necrosis factor alpha antibody improved CD and did not generate any complications of lung function, perhaps promoting an anti-inflammatory effect both on colon and lung.
Reference: Vincenzi F, Bizzarri B, Ghiselli A, de' Angelis N, Fornaroli F, de' Angelis GL. Cystic fibrosis and Crohn's disease: Successful treatment and long term remission with infliximab. World J Gastroenterol 2010; 16(15): 1924-1927
Correspondence to: Gian Luigi de' Angelis, Professor, Gastroenterology and Endoscopy Unit, University of Parma, via Gramsci 14, 43100 Parma, Italy. firstname.lastname@example.org
Telephone: +39-521-702204 Fax: +39-521-702204
About World Journal of Gastroenterology
World Journal of Gastroenterology (WJG), a leading international journal in gastroenterology and hepatology, has established a reputation for publishing first class research on esophageal cancer, gastric cancer, liver cancer, viral hepatitis, colorectal cancer, and H. pylori infection and provides a forum for both clinicians and scientists. WJG has been indexed and abstracted in Current Contents/Clinical Medicine, Science Citation Index Expanded (also known as SciSearch) and Journal Citation Reports/Science Edition, Index Medicus, MEDLINE and PubMed, Chemical Abstracts, EMBASE/Excerpta Medica, Abstracts Journals, Nature Clinical Practice Gastroenterology and Hepatology, CAB Abstracts and Global Health. ISI JCR 2008 IF: 2.081. WJG is a weekly journal published by WJG Press. The publication dates are the 7th, 14th, 21st, and 28th day of every month. WJG is supported by The National Natural Science Foundation of China, No. 30224801 and No. 30424812, and was founded with the name of China National Journal of New Gastroenterology on October 1, 1995, and renamed WJG on January 25, 1998.