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What is tofacitinib?

Donna Hill Howes, RN
Family Practitioner

Tofacitinib (Xeljanz) is a newer biologic drug for rheumatoid arthritis (RA). It acts on the immune system by blocking certain enzymes (Janus kinase, or JAK) that play a role in RA inflammation and joint damage. Unlike other biologics, it is taken as pills. Tofacitinib is usually prescribed for people with more severe RA that has stayed active despite treatment with traditional DMARDs and other biologics. 

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