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REVIEW ARTICLES  
CMH 2002 June;8:125-131.
Published online 1970 January 01.
Copyright © 2002 The Korean Association for the Study of the Liver
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Special Oromucosal Cytokine Therapy : Mechanism(s) of Action
Michael G. Tovey
Laboratory of Viral Oncology, UPR 9045 CNRS Institut Andre Lwoff, 94801 Villejuif, France
ABSTRACT
Oromucosal cytokine therapy allows large amounts of cytokines to be administered with improved outcome and without dose limiting toxicity. Orally administered cytokines exert their effects by a novel two pronged mechanism of action. Firstly, specific populations of immuno-competent effector cells are activated in the oral cavity and migrate to the site of virus replication. Secondly, chemokines produced in the lymphoid tissue of the oral cavity enter the peripheral circulation and redirect activated lymphocytes to eliminate virus infected cells. Oromucosal IFN therapy constitutes an alternative and improved means of therapy for diseases such as chronic viral hepatitis which are currently treated parenterally with IFN. The oral route also has obvious advantages for ease of administration and improved patient compliance. Furthermore, the availability of a well tolerated form of IFN therapy will also allow Type I IFNs to be used for the treatment of diseases such as upper respiratory tract virus infections, for which parenteral IFN therapy is currently precluded due to unacceptable toxicity.(Korean J Hepatol 2002;8:125-131)
Keywords: Cytokines, Interferon, Viral hepatitis, Cellular immunity, Gene expression
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