Interleukin-24 Gene Linked to Lupus Disease Activity
Researchers in China explored the interleukin-24 (IL-24) cytokine in people with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and healthy individuals to learn its relation to disease activity and potential therapeutic role.
Cytokines are proteins released by cells that have an effect on the interactions, communications or behavior of cells, and include molecules (interleukins and interferons) that trigger inflammation and response to infections.
Samples were obtained from 133 people; 75 patients with SLE and 58 controls (healthy comparison group).The recruited patients were all newly diagnosed without any treatment.
Levels of IL-24 were significantly higher in people with SLE, lupus nephritis, arthritis, and oral ulcers than in the healthy comparison group. This indicates that IL-24 contributes to destruction of the kidney, joints, and oral mucosa.
The investigators concluded their findings suggest that IL-24 may link to lupus disease activity and may play a potential role in SLE.