BACKGROUND:
IL-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1Ra) is a naturally occurring IL-1RI-binding molecule that blocks the biologic effects of the proinflammatory cytokine IL-1. A recombinant form of human IL-1Ra, anakinra (Kineret), has been approved for use in rheumatology initially to manage rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients that are refractory to more conventional forms of treatment.

OBJECTIVE:
This review summarizes the experience with anakinra in the treatment of patients with rheumatic diseases emphasizing its beneficial effects in novel applications.

METHODS:
English-language trials of anakinra were searched using MEDLINE and abstracts from rheumatology scientific meetings.

RESULTS/CONCLUSIONS:
In the treatment of patients with RA anakinra is effective but inferior to TNF-alpha blocking agents. Over the last few years it has become increasingly evident that anakinra is highly effective and safe in patients with systemic-onset juvenile idiopathic arthritis, adult-onset Still's disease, hereditary autoinflammatory syndromes, Schnitzler's syndrome and recently in gouty attacks.





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