Deborah McCurdy, MD, University of California at Los Angeles

"Association Between Polymorphisms in Genes Regulating the IFN-I Pathway, IFN-I Induced Gene Expression and FOXP3 Expression in Pediatric/Adolescent SLE"

This grant award is provided by the Wallace H. Coulter Foundation, in memory of Michael Jon Barlin

Children and adolescents have more severe lupus than adults and, thus may provide unique insights into its cause. Emerging evidence suggests that Interferon-a, a protein messenger that communicates between cells, is pivotal in the inflammation of lupus. We propose to study 50 pediatric patients with lupus and analyze genes that regulate and are regulated by Interferon-a and correlate this information with disease activity. Future plans include: 1.determine what causes increased Interferon-a activation; and 2.develop laboratory markers for genes that can be used to stratify patients with lupus for therapies targeted at the Interferon-a pathway.