Infections and systemic lupus erythematosus

Donato Rigante, S. Esposito, S. Bosis, M. Semino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

46 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a chronic autoimmune disease that presents a protean spectrum of clinical manifestations, and may affect any organ. The typical course of SLE is insidious, slow, and progressive, with potential exacerbations and remissions, and even dramatically acute and rapidly fatal outcomes. Recently, infections have been shown to be highly associated with the onset and/or exacerbations of SLE, and their possible causative and/or protective role has been largely emphasized in the medical literature. However, the etiopathogenesis of SLE is still obscure and far from being completely elucidated. Among infections, particularly Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), parvovirus B19, retrovirus, and cytomegalovirus (CMV) infections might play a pivotal pathogenetic role. The multifaceted interactions between infections and autoimmunity reveal many possibilities for either causative or protective associations. Indeed, some infections, primarily protozoan infections, might confer protection from autoimmune processes, depending on the unique interaction between the microorganism and host. Further studies are needed in order to demonstrate that infectious agents might, indeed, be causative of SLE, and to address the potential clinical sequelae of infections in the field of autoimmunity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1467-1475
Number of pages9
JournalEUROPEAN JOURNAL OF CLINICAL MICROBIOLOGY & INFECTIOUS DISEASES
Volume33(9)
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Keywords

  • Infection
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus

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