, Volume 8, Issue 2, pp 101-113
Date: 08 May 2011

Recent advances in understanding Crohn’s disease

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Crohn’s disease is a chronic inflammatory bowel disorder resulting from an inappropriate innate and acquired immune response to commensal microorganisms in genetically susceptible individuals. This disease has a fluctuating course, with alternating periods of remission and relapses, and it is characterized by a remarkable clinical heterogeneity; it may be complicated by perianal fistulas, abscesses, and intestinal strictures leading to obstructions, besides several systemic manifestations. However, a complete resolution of the disease is currently not possible, yet Crohn’s disease can be managed with established and novel therapies, which achieve long-term remission and acceptable quality of life. This review is focused on novel advances in basic and clinical aspects of Crohn’s disease, although it also deals with new trends in diagnosis and treatment.