1932

Abstract

Type I interferons, which make up the first cytokine family to be described and are the essential mediators of antivirus host defense, have emerged as central elements in the immunopathology of systemic autoimmune diseases, with systemic lupus erythematosus as the prototype. Lessons from investigation of interferon regulation following virus infection can be applied to lupus, with the conclusion that sustained production of type I interferon shifts nearly all components of the immune system toward pathologic functions that result in tissue damage and disease. We review recent data, mainly from studies of patients with systemic lupus erythematosus, that provide new insights into the mechanisms of induction and the immunologic consequences of chronic activation of the type I interferon pathway. Current concepts implicate endogenous nucleic acids, driving both cytosolic sensors and endosomal Toll-like receptors, in interferon pathway activation and suggest targets for development of novel therapeutics that may restore the immune system to health.

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2019-01-24
2024-05-23
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