Treatment of psoriatic arthritis with antitumour necrosis factor-α antibody clears skin lesions of psoriasis resistant to treatment with methotrexate


Matthias Lüftl. E-mail:


Background  In inflamed skin, keratinocytes and inflammatory cells both produce large amounts of tumour necrosis factor (TNF) -α, a cytokine with broad effects that are relevant to inflammation. Blockade of this proinflammatory cytokine by a monoclonal anti-TNF-α antibody might be effectively used in the treatment of inflammatory skin diseases.

Objectives  To gather information about the efficacy of an anti-TNF-α antibody (infliximab) in the treatment of skin lesions of psoriatic arthritis.

Methods  Six patients with progressive joint disease and psoriatic skin lesions unresponsive to methotrexate therapy were treated with anti-TNF-α antibody. The Psoriasis Area and Severity Index was determined before and 10 weeks after initiation of therapy.

Results  Improvement of psoriatic skin lesions was observed in all patients. In addition, a marked improvement of the joint disease was noted.

Conclusions  Therapy with anti-TNF-α antibody may be an effective treatment regimen for both psoriatic arthritis and psoriatic skin lesions.