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Overview of Immunobiological Treatment in Psoriasis

Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory skin condition, the exact cause of which remains unknown. Research has confirmed both genetic and immunologic influences as contributing factors.

It has long been understood that there is inflammation within the plaques of psoriasis. Revelations from a chance observation where an immunosuppressive drug, called cyclosporine, that is used to prevent organ transplant rejection, was also noted to improve psoriasis.

This treatment success pointed to the pivotal role of white blood cells, called lymphocytes, in causing psoriasis.

More recently, a substantial amount of work has defined many of the immunological events involved in psoriasis. Interestingly, the immune response that is seen in psoriasis appears to share similarities with other inflammatory conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn's disease, and possibly multiple sclerosis.

These developments have led to a better understanding of psoriasis and spawned new significant treatment advances, such as biologic therapies, that directly target the body's immune system.