Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) is a chronic autoimmune disease characterized by an excessive production of auto-antibodies against double-stranded DNA, nucleosomes, ribonucleoproteins and other nuclear components. Accumulation of self-reactive antibodies leads to immune complex deposition in blood vessels, activation of macrophages and complement, inflammation and subsequent tissue damage in several organs, such as the heart, kidneys, lungs and central nervous system. Although significant progress has been made in the past 30 years of research, no effective specific treatments are currently available. The course of this disease remains unpredictable and patients diagnosed with SLE face long-term treatments with the subsequent economic, social and health burden. From the immunological perspective, SLE is a genetic- and environment-controlled disease that involves almost every constituent of the immune system, including both innate and adaptive immunity. Therefore, several immune cell types and molecules could be susceptible for intervention and modulation to develop more effective and specific treatments. More importantly, such therapies are likely not to induce complete immunosuppression and show reduced side effects on patients. In this article we discuss recent work in the field of SLE pathogenesis with a focus on data that provide clues for therapy design and new treatments.
Áreas temáticas de ASJC Scopus
- Medicina molecular
- Biología molecular
- Descubrimiento de medicamentos
- Genética (clínica)