Journal Article

Immunoadsorption onto protein A induces remission in severe systemic lupus erythematosus

Norbert Braun, Christiane Erley, Reinhild Klein, Ina Kötter, Johannes Saal and Teut Risler

in Nephrology Dialysis Transplantation

Published on behalf of European Renal Association - European Dialysis and Transplant Assoc

Volume 15, issue 9, pages 1367-1372
Published in print September 2000 | ISSN: 0931-0509
Published online September 2000 | e-ISSN: 1460-2385 | DOI:
Immunoadsorption onto protein A induces remission in severe systemic lupus erythematosus

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Background. Reduction of pathological autoantibodies and circulating immune complexes can be useful in the treatment of autoimmune disease. Plasmapheresis has been shown to reduce autoantibody levels in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), but its effect on patients' outcome was not better compared with conventional immunosuppression in the past.

Aim of the study. Immunoadsorption as a selective extracorporeal immunoglobulin elimination technique was evaluated as rescue therapy in patients suffering from SLE.

Methods. Eight patients with severe, therapy‐resistant SLE underwent immunoadsorption onto protein A sepharose without concomitant immunosuppressants.

Results. Remission of the disease was achieved in seven patients. Therapy had to be stopped in one patient because of side‐effects. The best results were obtained when immunoadsorption was carried out daily, without supplementary intravenous immunoglobulin therapy. Oral cyclophosphamide for 3–6 months during follow‐up was used to suppress relapse. Autoantibodies and circulating immune complexes were effectively eliminated regardless of their IgG subclass.

Conclusion. Immunoadsorption onto protein A might be used as an extracorporeal treatment option in SLE when other therapies are ineffective.

Keywords: autoantibody; immune complexes; immunoadsorption; immunoglobulin subclasses; lupus nephritis; protein A

Journal Article.  3280 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Nephrology

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