Tissue markers may predict treatment response to antitumor necrosis factor-α agents in children with Crohn's disease

Alexander Krauthammer, Tal Cozacov, Sophia Fried, Adi Har-Zahav, Raanan Shamir, Amit Assa, Orith Waisbourd-Zinman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: Patients with moderate-severe Crohn's disease (CD) who are treated with antitumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) agents may be subjected to primary nonresponse or partial response. We aimed to identify tissue markers that may predict response to these agents. Methods: Pediatric patients (6–18 years) with either ileal or ileo-colonic CD who were treated with anti-TNF-α were stratified into three different groups based on their overall response to therapy at the end of induction including clinical and laboratory parameters (group 1—full responders [FR], group 2—partial responders [PR], group 3—nonresponders [NR]). Seven tissue markers (fibronectin, interleukin [IL]-23R, IL-23, TNF-α, collagen-III, IL-13R, and hypoxia-inducible factors [HIF]-1α) were evaluated. Immunofluorescence (IF) analyses were performed on biopsies from the terminal ileum, which were retrieved up to 6 months before treatment initiation. Results: Twenty-six CD patients (16 [61.5%] males; age 13.9 ± 2.9 years), including 8 (30.8%) with ileal disease and 18 (69.2%) with ileo-colonic disease, were enrolled. Terminal ileum biopsies from nine patients from group 1, nine from group 2, and eight from group 3 were evaluated. Three antibodies were found to be significantly different between NR and FR groups; Collagen III and fibronectin stains were significantly more prominent in NR patients, while TNF-α stain was significantly more pronounced in FR, p < 0.05 for each. PR could not have been predicted with neither of markers. Conclusions: Decreased tissue IF intensity of fibronectin and collagen III and increased intensity of TNF-α may predict response to anti-TNF-α treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)662-669
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2024
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 European Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition and North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition.


  • immunofluorescence
  • inflammatory bowel disease
  • personalized medicine
  • precision
  • remission


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