Systemic Lupus Erythematosus is a chronic, systemic autoimmune disease which can affect the joints, skin, kidney and other organs of the body. It may affect as many as 1 in 1,000 people, and typically affects women of child-bearing age, although men as well as children and older persons may be affected. Lupus flares can range from mild to severe, often resulting in periods in which the disease is relatively quiescent. However, in intense and complex forms, it may cause significant disability or even death.
Currently, no cures or remission-inducing therapies truly exist for lupus, and treatment often involves corticosteroids or other immunosuppressants. At BRI, research programs study the cells which regulate lupus in an effort to further understanding of disease pathogenesis, translating these findings into therapeutic targets. In addition, clinical trials are ongoing to evaluate novel therapies in this disease.