Serum Levels of Infliximab and Anti-Infliximab Antibodies in Brazilian Patients with Crohn’s Disease
OBJECTIVES: The aim of this study was to evaluate the quantitative serum level of infliximab (IFX) as well as the detection of anti-infliximab antibodies (ATIs) in patients with Crohn’s disease (CD). METHOD: Forty patients with CD under treatment at a tertiary center in southeastern Brazil were evaluated. Their use of infliximab was continuous and regular. We analyzed and compared the differences in the IFX and ATI levels between the patients with active CD (CDA) and those with CD in remission (CDR). RESULTS: There was no difference in the IFX level between the CDA and CDR groups (p40.05). Eighty percent of all patients had IFX levels above the therapeutic concentration (6-10 mg/mL). Two (9%) of the 22 patients with active disease and four (22.2%) of the 18 patients in remission had undetectable levels of IFX. Four (66.6%) of the six patients with undetectable levels of IFX had positive ATI levels; three of these patients were in remission, and one had active disease. In addition, the other two patients with undetectable levels of IFX presented ATI levels close to positivity (2.7 and 2.8 AU/ml). None of the patients with therapeutic or supratherapeutic IFX levels had positive ATI levels. CONCLUSIONS: The undetectable levels of IFX correlated with the detection of ATIs, which was independent of disease activity. Immunogenicity was not the main factor for the loss of response to IFX in our study, and the majority of patients in both groups (CDA and CDR) had supratherapeutic levels of IFX.