Patients with the autoimmune disease systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) have poor outcomes despite aggressive treatment with immuno-suppressive drugs. In a study published online on June 6 in JCI Insight, Chaim Putterman, M.D., and colleagues identified how SLE develops in the central nervous system independent of its occurrence elsewhere in the body. In research involving animal models of lupus and human lupus autopsy tissue, the scientists found that the immune system forms a tertiary lymphoid structure—which functions like a lymph node—in a deep brain structure called the choroid plexus. The newly discovered structure may be the route through which the immune system promotes CNS lupus. The findings may lead to new therapies for CNS lupus, which currently is extremely difficult to treat. Dr. Putterman is professor of medicine and of microbiology & immunology at Einstein and chief of rheumatology at Einstein and Montefiore.
Posted on: Wednesday, June 26, 2019