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Apoptosis. 2010 Sep;15(9):1098-113. doi: 10.1007/s10495-010-0478-8.

Inefficient clearance of dying cells in patients with SLE: anti-dsDNA autoantibodies, MFG-E8, HMGB-1 and other players.

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  • 1Department for Internal Medicine 3, University Hospital Erlangen, Friedrich-Alexander University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany.


Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a complex disease resulting from inflammatory responses of the immune system against several autoantigens. Inflammation is conditioned by the continuous presence of autoantibodies and leaked autoantigens, e.g. from not properly cleared dying and dead cells. Various soluble molecules and biophysical properties of the surface of apoptotic cells play significant roles in the appropriate recognition and further processing of dying and dead cells. We exemplarily discuss how Milk fat globule epidermal growth factor 8 (MFG-E8), biophysical membrane alterations, High mobility group box 1 (HMGB1), C-reactive protein (CRP), and anti-nuclear autoantibodies may contribute to the etiopathogenesis of the disease. Up to date knowledge about these key elements may provide new insights that lead to the development of new treatment strategies of the disease.

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