Clinical studies in patients with Castleman's disease, Crohn's disease, and rheumatoid arthritis in Japan

Clin Rev Allergy Immunol. 2005 Jun;28(3):221-30. doi: 10.1385/CRIAI:28:3:221.


Interleukin (IL)-6 is a pleiotropic cytokine with a wide range of biological activities and regulates immunological reactions, inflammatory responses, and hematopoiesis. Overproduction of IL-6 has been shown to be pathologically involved in some inflammatory diseases, such as Castleman's disease, Crohn's disease, and rheumatoid arthritis. Clinical studies have been conducted to investigate a role of IL-6 and the therapeutic potential of anti-IL-6 therapy for these diseases using humanized anti-IL-6 receptor antibody (tocilizumab; currently known as MRA). Overall, tocilizumab was well-tolerated, and improvements of signs and symptoms were observed, confirming the pathological role of IL-6 and suggesting that the blockade of IL-6 could become a new and important treatment option in these refractory diseases.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / therapeutic use
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / immunology*
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / therapy
  • Castleman Disease / immunology*
  • Castleman Disease / therapy
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Crohn Disease / immunology*
  • Crohn Disease / therapy
  • Humans
  • Interleukin-6 / immunology*
  • Japan
  • Receptors, Interleukin-6 / immunology


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized
  • Interleukin-6
  • Receptors, Interleukin-6
  • tocilizumab