Leading the way to a cure


The Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor

June 5, 2009

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)3 is a chronic autoimmune disease that affects primarily young women. The disease is highly heterogeneous in its clinical presentation which renders therapeutic interventions particularly challenging. A significant proportion of patients develop nephritis which typically requires the use of corticosteroids and cytotoxic agents (1). Although these agents have been used with varying success, they tend to be associated with significant side effects.

Importantly, SLE is associated with a striking increase in the risk of premature cardiovascular (CV) complications due to accelerated atherosclerosis (2), which significantly contributes to morbidity and mortality in this patient population (3). Although traditional risk factors may play a role in this increased propensity, they do not seem to fully account for this complication (4). As such, immune dysregulation characteristic of lupus may play a prominent role in the development of premature atherosclerosis. However, the exact etiology of increased CV risk in SLE remains unclear. A significant proportion of individuals with SLE have evidence of subclinical vascular disease which may precede atherosclerosis development.


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Source: Alliance for Lupus Research
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