Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Preclinical Study Suggests Organ-transplant Drug May Aid In Lupus Fight

Date:
August 16, 2007
Source:
UT Southwestern Medical Center
Summary:
A compound related to a drug used in humans to prevent organ-transplant rejection attacks a key biochemical process in the faulty immune cells of lupus-prone mice, suggesting a possible new approach to combating the disease.

A compound related to a drug used in humans to prevent organ-transplant rejection attacks a key biochemical process in the faulty immune cells of lupus-prone mice, suggesting a possible new approach to combating the disease, UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers have found.

"We found that an analog of rapamycin is very effective in improving all aspects of the disease in lupus-prone mice," said Dr. Chandra Mohan, professor of internal medicine and senior author of a study appearing in the August issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation. "Our next step will be to see if the same biochemical pathways exist in humans. If they do, this research and treatment could prove very significant."

Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease in which the immune system attacks the body's cells and tissues. In a normal immune system, foreign intruders are recognized by special immune cells called B-cells, which produce antibodies. In patients with lupus, however, the antibodies created by the B-cells start to attack the body itself.

Certain genetic strains of mice are prone to developing lupus. In the current study, a research team led by Dr. Mohan discovered that an analog of rapamycin shuts down specific biochemical processes in the B-cells of the mice. Rapamycin has been used in humans to prevent organ transplant rejection and for treating cancer. The analog of rapamycin halted production of antibodies and the development of lupus in all the strains of lupus-prone mice, as well as improved symptoms, despite each animal having a different genetic makeup that led to the disease.

"Though lupus in different mouse models may originate from different genetic triggers, those triggers ultimately funnel through a shared series of biochemical pathways that lead to the disease," Dr. Mohan said. "These shared biochemical pathways represent an attractive target for future therapeutic intervention in lupus patients."

In humans, lupus can cause life-threatening damage to the kidneys, lungs, heart, central nervous system, joints, blood vessels and skin. It can be associated with severe fatigue, joint pain, skin rashes, hair loss and neurological problems. Although treatable symptomatically, there is currently no cure for the disease, which affects up to 1 million people in the U.S.

Other UT Southwestern researchers involved with the study were Dr. Tianfu Wu, assistant instructor of immunology; Xiangmei Qin, research assistant in immunology; Zoran Kurepa, immunology resident; Kirthi Raman Kumar, postdoctoral trainee in internal medicine; Dr. Kui Liu, instructor of internal medicine; Hasna Kanta, research assistant in internal medicine; Dr. Xin J. Zhou, professor of pathology; Dr. Anne Satterthwaite, assistant professor of immunology; and Dr. Laurie Davis, associate professor of immunology.

The research was funded by the National Institutes of Health and the Alliance for Lupus Research.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by UT Southwestern Medical Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

UT Southwestern Medical Center. "Preclinical Study Suggests Organ-transplant Drug May Aid In Lupus Fight." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 August 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/08/070815105034.htm>.
UT Southwestern Medical Center. (2007, August 16). Preclinical Study Suggests Organ-transplant Drug May Aid In Lupus Fight. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/08/070815105034.htm
UT Southwestern Medical Center. "Preclinical Study Suggests Organ-transplant Drug May Aid In Lupus Fight." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/08/070815105034.htm (accessed August 22, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, August 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Drug Used To Treat 'Ebola's Cousin' Shows Promise

Drug Used To Treat 'Ebola's Cousin' Shows Promise

Newsy (Aug. 21, 2014) An experimental drug used to treat Marburg virus in rhesus monkeys could give new insight into a similar treatment for Ebola. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cadavers, a Teen, and a Medical School Dream

Cadavers, a Teen, and a Medical School Dream

AP (Aug. 21, 2014) Contains graphic content. He's only 17. But Johntrell Bowles has wanted to be a doctor from a young age, despite the odds against him. He was recently the youngest participant in a cadaver program at the Indiana University NW medical school. (Aug. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
American Ebola Patients Released: What Cured Them?

American Ebola Patients Released: What Cured Them?

Newsy (Aug. 21, 2014) It's unclear whether the American Ebola patients' recoveries can be attributed to an experimental drug or early detection and good medical care. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Lost Brain Cells To Blame For Sleep Problems Among Seniors

Lost Brain Cells To Blame For Sleep Problems Among Seniors

Newsy (Aug. 21, 2014) According to a new study, elderly people might have trouble sleeping because of the loss of a certain group of neurons in the brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins