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REVIEW ARTICLE
Year : 2011  |  Volume : 6  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 309-316

Biologic Agents in Inflammatory Eye Disease


1 Department of Neurosciences, Ophthalmology, University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy
2 The Eye Clinic, Polytechnic University of Marche, Ancona, Italy; Ophthalmology/ Ear, Nose, and Throat Department, Mother Teresa University Hospital Center, Tirana, Albania
3 The Eye Clinic, Polytechnic University of Marche, Ancona, Italy

Correspondence Address:
Piergiorgio Neri
Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology, Clinica Oculistica, Azienda Ospedaliera Universitaria-Ospedali Riuniti di Ancona Via Conca 71, 60100, Torrette-Ancona, Italy

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


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Non-infectious uveitis is a potentially sight threatening disease. Along the years, several therapeutic strategies have been proposed as a means to its treatment, including local and systemic steroids, immunosuppressives and more recently, biologic agents. The introduction of biologics can be defined as a new era: biologic therapies provide new options for patients with refractory and sight threatening inflammatory disorders. The availability of such novel treatment modalities has markedly improved the therapy of uveitis and considerably increased the possibility of long-term remissions. This article provides a review of current literature on biologic agents, such as tumor necrosis factor blockers, anti-interleukins and other related biologics, such as interferon alpha, for the treatment of uveitis. Several reports describe the efficacy of biologics in controlling a large number of refractory uveitides, suggesting a central role in managing ocular inflammatory diseases. However, there is still lack of randomized controlled trials to validate most of their applications. Biologics are promising drugs for the treatment of uveitis, showing a favorable safety and efficacy profile. On the other hand, lack of evidence from randomized controlled studies limits our understanding as to when commence treatment, which agent to choose, and how long to continue therapy. In addition, high cost and the potential for serious and unpredictable complications have very often limited their use in uveitis refractory to traditional immunosuppressive therapy.


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