Potential Immunomodulatory Effects of Statins in Inflammatory Bowel Disease

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Statins are among the most widely prescribed medications in the world. In addition to lowering cholesterol, statins have been shown to have immunomodulatory effects in multiple studies. For example, statins modulate the interaction between T cells and antigen-presenting cells, resulting in decreased T-cell activation and reduced levels of inflammatory cytokines. Statins have also been demonstrated to inhibit the migration of leukocytes across vascular endothelium into tissues. Although most research on the immune effects of statins has been conducted in the context of cardiovascular, rheumatological, or metabolic disease, various studies have shown that statins may have a significant impact on intestinal immunity and mucosal inflammation. Clinical research has suggested that statins may have benefit in inflammatory bowel disease. In this article, we review the effect of statins on the immune system and gastrointestinal tract, highlighting the potential for novel therapeutic applications in inflammatory bowel disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)724-732
Number of pages9
JournalInflammatory Bowel Diseases
Issue number3
StatePublished - 23 Nov 2015


  • Crohn's disease
  • Statin
  • colitis and colorectal cancer
  • ulcerative colitis


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