Medical discovery provides new insight into lupus treatment

Cai Wenjun
Medical professionals from Shanghai's Renji Hospital have taken part in a study that has discovered an important risk factor for lupus.
Cai Wenjun

Medical professionals from Shanghai's Renji Hospital teamed up with experts from the United States and Australia for a study that found a defect of one protein expression or function can be an important risk factor for lupus.

This provides a new avenue of treatment for the autoimmune disease.

The discovery was published in the world leading Journal of Experimental Medicine.

Systemic lupus erythematosu, or SLE, is a multi-system autoimmune disease with complicated causes, poor treatment effects and high mortality.

Researches have found the disease is closely related to the environment and genetics. For instance, SLE has a much higher incidence among identical twins than fraternal twins.

Based on the sample database at Renji Hospital, doctors conducted genetic research on samples from nearly 1,000 patients and their family members. They found that protein P2RY8 plays an important role in lupus patients. Mutation of the protein plays a great part in the occurrence and development of SLE.

The discovery offers a new target for the treatment of autoimmune disease and has very positive effects for clinical adoption, experts said.


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