Results From Promising New Therapy Shows it May Drive Lupus into Remission
In a new, small study, transfusions of genetically altered cells called CAR-T cells were found to drive lupus disease into remission. T-cells are part of the immune system. In this therapy, scientists create or engineer new cells called chimeric antigen receptors (CARs), and then introduce T-cells into them to create CAR-T cells.
Researchers infused CAR-T cells into five people with lupus (four women and one man). After infusion, the study participants saw a sharp drop in B cells (the cells responsible for creating antibodies, including autoantibodies, and are thought to play a role in the development and progression of autoimmune diseases) and improved lupus disease symptoms. After three months of treatment, all five of the participants achieved remission.
Initial results from the study suggest that CAR-T cell therapy may be effective in treating lupus. More research is needed to further assess the therapy’s ability to eliminate autoimmunity and inflammation in people with lupus. Continue to follow the Lupus Foundation of America for updates on this potential breakthrough therapy for lupus. Learn more about treatments being studied for lupus.