Gastroenterology Clinics of North America vol:37 issue:2 pages:429-438
Patients who have inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) express strong antibody responses to a variety of epitopes. A number of (auto)antibodies have been described in patients who have Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis. These markers reflect a loss of tolerance toward bacterial and fungal flora and have been studied for their clinical value in IBD patients. However, currently, they have no place in the diagnostic work up. Their real promise may lie in their use as surrogate markers of complicated aggressive disease as shown in various retrospective studies, but prospective data are lacking.