Finding A Cure For Lupus

Medical science continues to search for both a cause and a cure for lupus. As is the case with many autoimmune diseases, researching a specific cause takes time, money and luck.

What Possible Causes Of Lupus Are Being Explored?

Lupus is currently believed to be a combination of environmental, genetic and hormone problems. Researchers are looking into how these factors and others such as age, gender and ethnicity affect diagnosis of the lupus disease. Ongoing studies test the risk of medications in causing or enhancing lupus symptoms.

Research is also concerned with the discovery and process of lupus and how it affects the organs. Understanding the ways in which lupus behaves within the body can help us discover ways to slow or prevent this process entirely.

The search for biomarkers, or anything that presents itself in cells or tissues that could predict or explain flare ups, continues.

What Cures For Lupus Are Being Researched?

Without a firm understanding of what causes lupus, research for an absolute cure for lupus is limited. As we gain more understanding of how lupus works within the body, we’ll be better able to develop drugs which prevent symptoms from advancing. Special lupus diets are also being studied.

New medication is constantly entering the clinical trial phase. Some, like rituximab, are concerned with lowering white blood cell counts in order to reduce the production of antibodies. Others are looking for more efficient ways to eliminate particular symptoms.

In March 2011, the FDA approved Benlysta, the first drug to be approved for lupus treatment in 56 years. Benlysta is meant to reduce the number of abnormal B cells which may be a cause of lupus. More studies are being done to discover why patients of African descent did not respond to the drug during clinical trials.

What Can I Do To Help?

Many organizations and support groups have been created in response to the numbers of individuals diagnosed with lupus each year. You can get involved with these organizations by volunteering to help staff booths and events. Many of these organizations host or participate in marathons, raffles, and charity events which you can help support with your time or money.

If you have been diagnosed with lupus, talk to your doctor about participating in clinical trials of new drugs or alternative lupus treatment programs. Your feedback in these trials can help improve treatment options for others diagnosed with lupus, and aid scientists toward understanding lupus.