John Libbey Eurotext

European Journal of Dermatology


Delayed response of oral pemphigus vulgaris to rituximab treatment Volume 16, issue 3, May-June 2006


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Universitätsklinikum Gießen und Marburg, Klinik für Dermatologie und Allergologie, Standort Marburg, Deutschhausstr. 9, 35037 Marburg, Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg, Universitätsklinikum Erlangen, Dermatologische Klinik mit Poliklinik, Hartmannstr. 14, 91052 Erlangen
  • Key words: IVIG, intravenous immunoglobulins, PF, pemphigus foliaceus, PV, pemphigus vulgaris
  • Page(s) : 266-70
  • Published in: 2006

Rituximab is a monoclonal antibody directed against the CD20 antigen of B cells, which has been developed for the treatment of lymphomas and has been successfully used in the treatment of recalcitrant pemphigus vulgaris. Here, we report on a 26-year-old patient with an 18 month history of pemphigus vulgaris of the oral mucosa where treatment with rituximab led to a delayed but sustained therapeutic response. This case is of interest since most of the previous reports have described a more rapid clinical improvement of refractory pemphigus by rituximab treatment. The delayed clinical response to rituximab of the present case may be explained by the persistence of long-lived plasma cells that continued to produce pathogenic autoantibodies against desmoglein 3.