Leading the way to a cure

Lupus Research Update: 2010 Volume 1

Volume 1, 2010 - Online Edition | In This Issue

The Expanding Horizons of Lupus Research >
A Message from the President >
Turning Promising Ideas Into Effective Treatments >
New Drug Shows Positive Results In Clinical Trial >
ALR Announces 2010 TIL Grantees >
Lupus News Corner >

The Expanding Horizons of Lupus Research

In our last Lupus Research Update (LRU), Dr. Joseph Craft, former chair of our Scientific Advisory Board (SAB), took us on a journey into the many ways that the ALR has changed the landscape of lupus research over the past ten years. Dr. Peggy Crow

Today, as we continue to celebrate our 10th Anniversary year, SAB chair, Dr. Peggy Crow presents a glimpse of what the future may hold. Dr. Crow explains that the many accomplishments of the past decade have increased our understanding of the molecular and cellular basis of lupus — and that the broadening of our base of knowledge is the springboard to new ideas and discoveries.

“Since the ALR was founded, investigators are better equipped with crucial scientific data,” explains Dr. Crow “Today, the challenge is to integrate all the information coming out of research and to answer questions such as, what can trigger the process? And can we learn more to prevent onset of the disease?”

Dr. Crow also recognizes that the ALR-funded International SLE Genetics Consortium (SLEGEN) discovery of genetic markers holds great promise: “Past investigations often yielded scattered information — but SLEGEN is helping to fill in the missing pieces of the puzzle.”

The field of genetics is pivotal in determining an individual’s chances of developing lupus. Also, Dr. Crow is certain that this knowledge “will move toward more effective treatments through new drug development.”

“Our job, today, is to find treatments that may be more effective in individuals with certain genetic profiles,” Dr. Crow said. Examining these factors could also improve clinical trial results since treatments appear to work differently in different patients.

Another key function of the ALR is to serve as a liaison between academic investigators and drug developers. “Our role is to find approaches and opportunities that facilitate the process of bringing solid data to the clinical trial phase of drug development.”

“This is certainly an exciting time in lupus research,” Dr. Crow continued. “Never before have there been so many potential new treatments.” Dr. Crow sees “the big payoff” as better patient care with more options for people with lupus ... and that is certainly welcome news.

1.5 million

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