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Autoimmunity. 2006 Aug;39(5):367-78.

Complement deficiencies in humans and animals: links to autoimmunity.

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Division of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Rheumatology Section, Imperial College, Hammersmith Campus, Du Cane Road, London, W12 0NN, UK.


Complement is involved in the pathogenesis of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) in multiple ways and may act as both friend and foe. Inherited homozygous deficiency of one of the earliest components of the classical pathway is strongly associated with susceptibility to the development of SLE. However, complement is also implicated in the effector inflammatory phase of the autoimmune response that characterizes the disease. A further paradox in the links between complement and SLE is the observation that autoantibodies to some complement proteins, especially to C1q, develop as part of the autoantibody response. In this chapter, the role of the complement system in SLE is reviewed and hypotheses advanced to explain the complex relationships between complement and lupus.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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