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Trends Immunol. 2009 May;30(5):201-8. doi: 10.1016/ Epub 2009 Apr 6.

The protective role of ROS in autoimmune disease.

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Medical Inflammation Research, Lund University, C12 BMC, 221 84 Lund, Sweden.


For a long time, reactive oxygen species (ROS) produced by the phagocyte NADPH oxidase (NOX2) complex have been considered harmful mediators of inflammation owing to their highly reactive nature. However, there are an increasing number of findings suggesting that ROS produced by the NOX2 complex are anti-inflammatory and prevent autoimmune responses, thus challenging existing dogma. ROS might not only be produced as a mechanism to eradicate invading pathogens, but rather as a means by which to fine-tune the inflammatory response, depending on when, where and at what amounts they are produced. In this review, we aim to describe the current findings highlighting ROS as regulators of autoimmune inflammation, focusing on autoimmune arthritis.

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