Qui Guo, PhD, Hospital for Special Surgery

"Toll-Like Receptor 7-RNA Interaction in the Pathogenesis of Lupus"

2007 Novel Pilot Projects Program

Tissue inflammation and damage in lupus are mediated by the deposition of autoantibodies that target self-components.  We plan to study the molecular basis for the interaction between the RNA that is targeted by lupus autoantibodies and an important cell-signaling molecule, toll-like receptor (TLR7).  We propose that this interaction is essential for the induction of interferon, an immune system mediator, and for amplification of the autoimmunity and tissue damage that contribute to disease in lupus patients.  Defining endogenous RNA-TLR7 interactions will contribute to understanding how autoantibodies stimulate tissue damage and may lead to new approaches in treating lupus.