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Therapeutic Inhibitors of Antigen Presentation Pathways in SLE

B cells are doubly destructive in lupus. They can directly stimulate T cells to attack patients’ own tissues. Dr. Mamula has found that they also indirectly trigger T cell attacks by interacting with other immune cells. although current lupus drugs can prevent B cells from directly stimulating T cells, they do not stop B cells […] Read More

Targeting Follicular Helper CD4 T cells in SLE

A specific type of T cell drives the tissue damage that occurs in lupus. These cells need more energy than normal cells, and that might be their Achilles heel. Dr. Morel has found that the numbers of these T cells in mice can be reduced with common diabetes treatments such as metformin that deprive the […] Read More

TLR9 Regulates Axl Dependent Migration of Autoreactive B Cells

In lupus, proteins in the immune system known as toll-like receptors help trigger the damaging effects of the disease. But one of the proteins, known as TLR9, is the black sheep of the toll-like receptor family—it reduces the severity of lupus symptoms. Dr. Nündel’s research suggests that TLR9 is helpful because it prevents immune cells […] Read More

The Role of Bacterial Infections in the Pathogenesis of Lupus

With his TIL grant, Dr. Roberto Caricchio is studying whether usually harmless, common bacterial infections, such as urinary tract infections, might be an environmental trigger of lupus onset and flares in genetically at-risk individuals. Normally, a bacterial infection sets off the immune system to make antibodies and take other actions to fight off the invading […] Read More

Targeting the Inactive X Chromosome in Lupus

Lupus affects nine times more women than men. One explanation for this phenomenon lies in the difference between women’s and men’s chromosomes, the long pieces of DNA within each cell that contain our genes lined up one after the other like recipes in a cookbook. Women have two X chromosomes, while men have one X […] Read More

Characterization of STING SAVI Gain of Function Mutations in Mice.

Lupus affects nine times more women than men. One explanation for this SAVI (STING-associated vasculopathy with onset in early infancy) is a disease caused by a mutation in the gene that makes a protein called STING. In patients with SAVI, the STING protein is locked in its “on” position, causing immune cells to be constantly […] Read More

ALCAM in Lupus

Lupus nephritis (kidney disease) is one of the most serious complications of lupus. With the TIL grant support, Dr. Mohan will build on his existing discoveries to evaluate a potential new therapeutic target for lupus nephritis.  In comparing the levels of 1,100 proteins in the urine of lupus patients and healthy controls, Dr. Mohan already […] Read More

Defining New Targets in lupus Through Identification of Non-coding SNPs

Scientists have found more than 50 regions of DNA that contribute to lupus risk. At least 35 of these DNA regions regulate gene activity—they serve as magnets that attract proteins, which in turn, act as control switches that determine whether a gene is more or less active. Variations in gene activity influence a person’s biology—for […] Read More

Targeting Endogenous Glomerular Repair in Lupus Nephritis

Dr. Janos Peti-Peterdi studies what goes wrong with the kidneys in people with lupus and how kidneys damaged by lupus can be repaired. He has developed a pioneering research technique, known as “intravital imaging,” to use a highly sensitive microscope to directly examine in fine detail the kidneys in an animal model of lupus. He […] Read More

Role of Infection in Obstetric Antiphospholipid Syndrome

Women with antiphospholipid syndrome, a clotting disorder that can occur in lupus patients, are at high risk for pregnancy complications like miscarriage and preeclampsia, which causes hypertension and swelling. It’s known that in women with lupus, antiphospholipid antibodies can attack the placenta and change its normal function of maintaining a healthy pregnancy. Dr. Abrahams’ study […] Read More

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