Redesigning Dnase1L3 for the treatment of systemic lupus erythematosus
Administrative Supplement to Promote Diversity in Lupus Research was awarded to Johanna Villarreal for her research contribution to this project.
One of the processes that causes tissue damage in lupus patients is the generation of autoantibodies: antibodies that trigger inflammation. One part of the body that an autoantibody can react to is DNA, the genetic material inside your cells. If any DNA leaks out of cells —which happens sometimes in everyone—there is a special enzyme that cleans it up. But in some lupus patients, this enzyme doesn’t work well. Injecting it into people with lupus could possibly help them, but the injected enzyme wouldn’t last for very long in the body.
With LRA’s Lupus Mechanisms and Targets Award, Dr. Sutton’s lab is planning to fortify this enzyme so it would last longer, which may allow it to be tested as a potential therapy for SLE.
What this means for people with lupus
Making a version of this enzyme that is long-lasting in the body could provide a treatment that would be effective without unpleasant side effects.