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Open Badges Editorial

Is interleukin-1 a good target for therapeutic intervention in intervertebral disc degeneration: lessons from the osteoarthritic experience

Philippe Goupille1*, Denis Mulleman1 and Xavier Chevalier2

Author Affiliations

1 CHRU de Tours, Université François Rabelais, INSERM, Centre d'investigation clinique 202, Tours, France

2 University Hospital, Créteil, France

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Arthritis Research & Therapy 2007, 9:110  doi:10.1186/ar2324

See related research article by Le Maitre et al.,

Published: 21 November 2007


IL-1 plays a key role in disc degeneration and could be a valid target for inhibiting this process. IL-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1ra) might be a good candidate to inhibit IL-1 activity. However, many questions need to be addressed before contemplating therapy in humans. IL-1 blockade is also a great challenge in osteoarthritis and results from animal models suggest that IL-1ra may have beneficial effects. The clinical benefit of a local injection of IL-1ra in knee osteoarthritis may be limited by the antagonist's short half-life. Further studies with longer-lasting antagonists are needed to explore this new therapeutic approach.