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Cytokine Growth Factor Rev. 2008 Jun-Aug;19(3-4):231-44. doi: 10.1016/j.cytogfr.2008.04.010. Epub 2008 May 27.

Physiological functions of tumor necrosis factor and the consequences of its pathologic overexpression or blockade: mouse models.

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Engelhardt Institute of Molecular Biology, Russian Academy of Sciences, Vavilov Street 32, Moscow 119991, Russia.


TNF is an exciting cytokine which has helped to establish many paradigms in immunology. Although TNF itself has found only very limited use in the clinic, anti-cytokine therapy, which targets this single molecule, has enjoyed astounding success in treatment of a growing number of human diseases. However, since TNF mediates unique physiologic functions, in particular those related to host defense, TNF blockade may result in unwanted consequences. Much of our understanding about TNF intrinsic functions in the body, as well as about consequences of its overexpression and ablation, is based on studying phenotypes of various genetically engineered mice. Here we review mouse studies aimed at understanding TNF physiologic functions using transgenic and knockout models, and we discuss additional mouse models that may be helpful in the future.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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