Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical Classification System
Efalizumab is a recombinant humanized monoclonal antibody that binds specifically to the CD11a subunit of LFA-1 (lymphocyte function-associated antigen-1), a leukocyte cell surface protein. By this mechanism, efalizumab inhibits the binding of LFA-1 to ICAM-1, which interferes with T lymphocytes adhesion to other cell types. LFA-1 is present on activated T lymphocytes, and ICAM-1 is up-regulated on endothelial cells and keratinocytes in psoriasis plaques. By preventing LFA-1/ICAM binding, efalizumab may alleviate signs and symptoms of psoriasis by inhibiting several stages in the immunologic cascade.