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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Topical delivery of therapeutic agents in the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease.

For targeting local and systemic inflammatory processes in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) therapeutic agents of first choice (e.g. aminosalicylates, corticosteroids) have been developed in special galenic forms to accomplish the topical delivery of the active compounds to the terminal ileum (Crohn's disease) and/or the colon (Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis). However, it has to be realized that intestinal physiology (e.g. motility, intraluminal pH profiles), extent and pattern of IBD as well as drug disposition demonstrate large interindividual differences resulting in variable clinical response rates between about 35% and 75%. 5-Aminosalicylate (5-AS) can be delivered to the colon either by azo-prodrugs (e.g. sulfasalazine, olsalazine or balsalazide) or by direct rectal administration of 5-AS in form of enemas, foam or suppositories. Such formulations will be only effective in patients with ulcerative colitis (UC). Various slow/controlled release preparations of 5-AS have been developed for oral use. Some of them (e.g. Pentasa, Salofalk) release sufficient 5-AS already in the small bowel which could provide some additional benefit in Crohn's disease (CD). As urinary and faecal recoveries of total 5-AS are similar for all oral formulations, no major clinical differences can be expected. Extent of the disease, profile of adverse effects and patient's acceptance provide some guidance for selection of the particular agent. Rectal installation of several glucocorticosteroids has been employed for many years. More recently scientific and clinical interest has been focused on budesonide which is extensively presystemically metabolized in the intestinal wall and the liver. Therefore, its systemic availability is low (10-15%) independent whether budesonide is administered orally as controlled release formulation in patients with CD or rectally as enema in patients with UC. Numerous pharmacokinetic and clinical studies have documented the anticipated topical delivery and clinical efficacy of this corticosteroid without serious side effects such as cushingoid features. It can be assumed that for any novel therapeutic principle in IBD the approach of topical delivery will be also tried.[1]


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