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Crohn's disease

Fergus Shanahan
From: Science & Medicine: Volume 9 Number 1: Page 48 (February 2003)

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Abstract: Few disorders in clinical medicine cause as much morbidity as Crohn's disease. As countries have become more developed, the prevalence of Crohn's disease has shown sharp increases, while remaining low in undeveloped regions. Although an undiscovered infectious agent might be the cause, a more likely explanation is that the disease is a disorder of immune education related to changes in microbial exposure associated with a modern lifestyle. The initiating event remains unclear, but advances in understanding the mechanisms of tissue injury and the molecular basis of interactions between genes, bacteria, and immunity in Crohn's disease are being translated into new therapeutic opportunities.

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