Autoantibodies in systemic lupus erythematosus: From immunopathology to therapeutic target.
Lou H., Ling GS., Cao X.
Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is an autoimmune disease characterized by multiple organ inflammatory damage and wide spectrum of autoantibodies. The autoantibodies, especially anti-dsDNA and anti-Sm autoantibodies are highly specific to SLE, and participate in the immune complex formation and inflammatory damage on multiple end-organs such as kidney, skin, and central nervous system (CNS). However, the underlying mechanisms of autoantibody-induced tissue damage and systemic inflammation are still not fully understood. Single cell analysis of autoreactive B cells and monoclonal antibody screening from patients with active SLE has improved our understanding on the origin of autoreactive B cells and the antigen targets of the pathogenic autoantibodies. B cell depletion therapies have been widely studied in the clinics, but the development of more specific therapies against the pathogenic B cell subset and autoantibodies with improved efficacy and safety still remain a big challenge. A more comprehensive autoantibody profiling combined with functional characterization of autoantibodies in diseases development will shed new insights on the etiology and pathogenesis of SLE and guide a specific treatment to individual SLE patients.