Challenges and Opportunities in Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Challenges and Opportunities in Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Amosy Ephreim M’Koma, M.D., M.S., Ph.D., AGA., ASCRS.ASI


Inflammatory bowel disease has an enormous impact on public health, medical systems, economies, and social conditions. Biologic therapy has ameliorated the treatment and clinical course of patients with inflammatory bowel disease. The efficacy and safety profiles of currently available therapies are still less that optimal in numerous ways, highlighting the requirement for new therapeutic targets. A bunch of new drug studies are underway in inflammatory bowel disease with promising results. This is an outlined guideline of clinical diagnosis and pharmaceutical therapy of inflammatory bowel disease. Outline delineates the overall recommendations on the modern principles of desirable practice to bolster the adoption of best implementations and exploration as well as inflammatory bowel disease patient, gastroenterologist, and other healthcare provider education. Inflammatory bowel disease encompasses Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, the two unsolved medical inflammatory bowel disease-subtypes condition with no drug for cure. The signs and symptoms on first presentation relate to the anatomical localization and severity of the disease and less with the resulting diagnosis that can clinically and histologically be non-definitive to interpret and establish criteria, specifically in colonic inflammatory bowel disease when the establishment is inconclusive is classified as indeterminate colitis. Conservative pharmaceuticals and accessible avenues do not depend on the disease phenotype. The first line management is to manage symptoms and stabilize active disease; at the same time maintenance therapy is indicated. Nutrition and diet do not play a primary therapeutic role but is warranted as supportive care. There is need of special guideline that explore solution of groundwork gap in terms of access limitations to inflammatory bowel disease care, particularly in developing countries and the irregular representation of socioeconomic stratification with a strategic plan, for the unanswered questions and perspective for the future, especially during the surfaced global COVID-19 pandemic caused by coronavirus SARS-CoV2 impacting on both the patient’s psychological functioning and endoscopy services.  Establishment of a global registry system and accumulated experiences have led to consensus for inflammatory bowel disease management under the COVID-19 pandemic. Painstakingly, the pandemic has influenced medical care systems for these patients. I briefly herein viewpoint summarize among other updates the telemedicine roles during the pandemic and how operationally inflammatory bowel disease centers managed patients and ensured quality of care. In conclusion: inflammatory bowel disease has become a global emergent disease. Serious medical errors are public health problem observed in developing nations i.e., to distinguish inflammatory bowel disease and infectious and parasitic

diseases. Refractory inflammatory bowel disease is a still significant challenge in the management of patients with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. There are gaps in knowledge and future research directions on the recent newly registered pharmaceuticals. The main clinical outcomes for inflammatory bowel disease were maintained during the COVID-19 pandemic period.

Antonio Rispo, Anna Testa, Olga Maria Nardone, Alessia Dalila Guarino, Nicola Imperatore, Giuseppe Fierro, Fabiana Castiglione, and Giulio Calabrese


Inflammatory bowel disease, comprising Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, defines as an idiopathic, chronic, relapsing, inflammatory disease affecting the gastrointestinal tract and leading to chronic damage. Endoscopy with biopsies is considered the gold standard for inflammatory bowel disease diagnosis, whereas magnetic resonance for Crohn’s disease extension and complication assessment. However, colonoscopy is an invasive procedure, while magnetic resonance is relatively not easily accessible for patients; thus, the need for a reliable, accessible and non-invasive way to perform inflammatory bowel diseases diagnosis and monitoring in the tight control era, like intestinal ultrasound is. Compared to endoscopy and magnetic resonance, ultrasound has shown reliable diagnostic accuracy in assessing Crohn’s disease diagnosis and evaluation of localisation, extension and complications. On the other hand, intestinal ultrasound is emerging as a valid tool also for ulcerative colitis severity and extension assessment. Moreover, performing ultrasonography in a point-of-care setting can guide the clinician in driving the diagnostic and therapeutic pathway, thus accelerating clinical decisions. As a novelty, point-of-care intestinal ultrasound performed with pocket devices could represent a promising item for the future of physical examination in outpatient or inpatient examination. The need for reproducibility of intestinal ultrasound among sonographers has emerged as a key-point in inflammatory bowel disease research field: the development of new scores for the evaluation of disease severity together with an intensive dedicated trainship could potentially reduce the differences between clinicians reporting.

Accordingly, our aim was to perform a narrative review about the application of intestinal ultrasound in Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis diagnosis and monitoring. Furthermore, technical aspects of this imaging technique and its application in a point-of-care setting through traditional and handheld sonographers were explored.

Amosy E. M’Koma, Jamie N. Ware, Rosemary K. Nabaweesi, and Sanika S. Chirwa


Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a term for two autoimmune diseases encompassing Crohn’s disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC) which are lifelong diseases affecting more than 3 million adults (1.3%) in the United States. IBD is characterized by chronic inflammation of the whole digestive system which results in damage to the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. IBD often emerges during adolescence and young adulthood. Maternal morbidity includes physical and psychological conditions that result from or are aggravated by pregnancy and have an adverse effect on a woman’s health, the baby’s health or both.  Some women have health challenges that arise before or during pregnancy that could lead to complications. It is recommended for women to receive health care counseling before and during pregnancy. Compared to other developed countries, the United States has the highest rate of women dying of pregnancy related complications. During the past 25 years maternal mortality has been getting worse. African American women (AAW) with and/or without IBD are dying at significantly higher rates than other groups. This is linked to several factors, i.e., systemic, institutionalized, and structural racism in health-care delivery and subsequent toxic stress from people’s lived experiences of racism, limited knowledge about healthcare system function, lack of access to healthcare, (inclusiveness and insurance policies) all of which negatively impact these patients. African Americans (AAs) are also up to three times as likely to experience severe maternal morbidity: unexpected outcomes of labor and delivery, deficient or lacking prenatal care and social determinants of health like lack of transportation, adequate employment, limited literacy, and limited healthcare access contribute to poor health outcomes. Studies on IBD patients indicate Medicaid expansion is associated with reduced rates of maternal morbidity, particularly for African American Women (AAW) and increased access to preconception and prenatal services that make pregnancy and childbirth safer for parent and baby. Herein we examine the physiological changes of pregnancy in patients diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease and their relationship perinatal outcomes and parenthood.

Maro Kyriacou, Sudheer Kumar Vuyyuru, and Gordon William Moran


Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD), which encompasses Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, represents a chronic and progressive condition characterised by periods of active inflammation interspersed with periods of remission. The resulting disease burden, arising from patient symptoms and complications, leads to a diminished quality of life for individuals with IBD. Despite significant advancements in the management of IBD, the ideal treatment targets are uncertain. The evolution of treatment targets in IBD signifies a paradigm shift from mere symptom control to a more holistic approach that aims at achieving deeper remission and improving patients’ quality of life. The “treat-to-target” paradigm, guided by international consensus and expert insights, emphasises the importance of tailoring therapeutic goals to individual patient needs and disease severity. As our understanding of IBD’s underlying mechanisms deepens and therapeutic options expand, treatment goals have evolved to include not only clinical response but also the pursuit of more objective endpoints such as endoscopic healing. Emerging targets, such as the assessment of transmural healing through cross-sectional imaging and the focus on histologic remission as a predictor of long-term outcomes, hold great promise in further refining IBD management strategies. However, further research is needed to recommend these treatment targets in clinical practice. In the review we explore the ongoing evolution of treatment targets in IBD aimed at optimising patient outcomes and ultimately improving quality of life (QoL).

Ruben JF RamosDimitri F Joseph, Shubh Thaker, Joseph F LaComb, Katherine MarkarianHannah J Lee, Jessica C Petrov, Farah Monzur, Jonathan M Buscaglia, Anupama Chawla, Leslie Small-Harary, Grace Gathungu, Jeffrey A Morganstern, Jie Yang Jinyu Li, Eric G Pamer, Charles E Robertson, Daniel N Frank, Justin R Cross, and Ellen Li


Background. Fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) is an effective treatment of recurrent Clostridioides difficile infections (rCDI), but has more limited efficacy in treating either ulcerative colitis (UC) or Crohn’s disease (CD), two major forms of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD). We hypothesize that FMT recipients with rCDI and/or IBD have baseline fecal bile acid (BA) compositions that differ significantly from that of their healthy donors and that FMT will normalize the BA compositions.

Aim. To study the effect of single colonoscopic FMT on microbial composition and function in four recipient groups: 1.) rCDI patients without IBD (rCDI-IBD); 2.) rCDI with IBD (rCDI+IBD); 3.) UC patients without rCDI (UC-rCDI); 4.) CD patients without rCDI (CD-rCDI).

Methods. We performed 16S rRNA gene sequence, shotgun DNA sequence and quantitative bile acid metabolomic analyses on stools collected from 55 pairs of subjects and donors enrolled in two prospective single arm FMT clinical trials (Clinical ID NCT03268213, 479696, UC no rCDI ≥ 2x IND 1564 and NCT03267238, IND 16795). Fitted linear mixed models were used to examine the effects of four recipient groups, FMT status (Donor, pre-FMT, 1-week post-FMT, 3-months post-FMT) and first order Group*FMT interactions on microbial diversity and composition, bile acid metabolites and bile acid metabolizing enzyme gene abundance.

Results. The pre-FMT stools collected from rCDI ± IBD recipients had reduced α-diversity compared to the healthy donor stools and was restored post-FMT. The α-diversity in the pre-FMT stools collected from UC-rCDI or CD-rCDI recipients did not differ significantly from donor stools. FMT normalized some recipient/donor ratios of genus level taxa abundance in the four groups. Fecal secondary BA levels, including some of the secondary BA epimers that exhibit in vitro immunomodulatory activities, were lower in rCDI±IBD and CD–rCDI but not UC-rCDI recipients compared to donors. FMT restored secondary BA levels. Metagenomic baiE gene and some of the eight bile salt hydrolase (BSH) phylotype abundances were significantly correlated with fecal BA levels.

Conclusion. Restoration of multiple secondary BA levels, including BA epimers implicated in immunoregulation, are associated with restoration of fecal baiE gene counts, suggesting that the 7-α-dehydroxylation step is rate-limiting.

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