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Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE)

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is an autoimmune chronic inflammatory disease that affects multiple systems. It primarily occurs in young women. Specialized drug and therapy development services are essential to enhance and expedite SLE research. Our company is well-equipped to address your drug and therapy development requirements in SLE therapy.

Introduction to SLE

SLE is a systemic autoimmune disorder marked by abnormal immune system activity. It exhibits a broad spectrum of symptoms, such as renal, dermatological, neuropsychiatric, and cardiovascular complications. The annual incidence of SLE ranges from 0.3 to 31.5 per 100,000, while the adjusted prevalence is nearing or even surpassing 50 to 100 per 100,000.

Pathogenesis of SLE

Both innate and adaptive immunity participate in the pathogenesis of SLE. In individuals with genetic susceptibility and environmental factors, SLE is characterized by innate and adaptive immune reactions, the accumulation of apoptotic cells, and neutrophil activation, which exposes cellular nucleic acids to the immune system. Activated dendritic cells respond to these nucleic acids through toll-like receptors, producing type-I IFN and BAFF, which drive pro-inflammatory responses and B-cell activation. These activities facilitate the generation and accumulation of autoantibodies by plasma cells in the bone marrow, forming immune complexes that lead to tissue damage and play a central role in the pathogenesis of SLE.

Both innate and adaptive immunity participate in the pathogenesis of SLE.Fig.1 Both innate and adaptive immunity participate in the pathogenesis of SLE. (Accapezzato, D., et al., 2023)

Diagnosis Development of SLE

Diagnosing SLE relies on a combination of criteria established by organizations such as the ACR and SLICC, alongside sensitive laboratory tests like ANA, anti-dsDNA, and complement levels to detect specific indicators of the disease. Emerging diagnostic technologies and biomarkers are enhancing the precision of SLE diagnostics, with ongoing research into new autoantibodies and molecular signatures.

Common biomarkers for SLE and their measurement sites in patients with SLE.Fig.2 Common biomarkers for SLE and their measurement sites in patients with SLE. (Yu, H., et al., 2021)

Therapy Development of SLE

Small Molecule Drugs

Small molecule drugs play a crucial role, with hydroxychloroquine serving as a cornerstone therapy, known for its anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effects. Additionally, belimumab, the first targeted biologic approved for SLE, inhibits B-cell activating factor (BAFF) to reduce autoantibody production.

Cell Therapies

Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) is employed in severe cases to reset the immune system by replacing aberrant cells with healthy ones. Mesenchymal stem cell therapy (MSC) shows promise in modulating immune responses and reducing inflammation, while autologous tolerogenic dendritic cells are engineered to induce tolerance to autoantigens.

Monoclonal Antibodies

Monoclonal antibodies are another vital aspect of therapy development for SLE. Rituximab targets CD20 on B cells to induce depletion, often used off-label for refractory cases. Epratuzumab targets CD22, modulating B-cell signaling and function, and ocrelizumab, an anti-CD20 monoclonal antibody, shows efficacy, especially in refractory cases.

Gene Therapies

With CRISPR/Cas9-mediated gene editing investigated for correcting genetic mutations associated with SLE, offering potential curative approaches. Strategies to inhibit interferon-alpha (IFN-α) signaling aim to mitigate the overactive type-I interferon pathway, while gene therapy targeting toll-like receptor (TLR) signaling pathways aims to regulate aberrant immune responses.

Our Services

We work together with our clients to develop innovative SLE therapies. Our team dedicates itself to crafting personalized strategies that align with your objectives, ensuring you are supported at every step.

Platforms of SLE Therapy Development

Animal Models of SLE

We have established expertise in developing and utilizing relevant animal models that closely mimic the disease characteristics and response to therapy. These models enable us to evaluate the safety and efficacy of potential therapies.

Non-Genetically Engineering Models
Our company specializes in delivering top-notch services to create NON-GEMs. We provide diverse model choices customized to meet specific research needs related to SLE.
Optional Models
  • Pristane-Induced Lupus Model
  • Mercury-Induced Lupus Model
  • Hydralazine-Induced Lupus Model
  • Accelerated and Delayed Lupus Models
Genetically Engineered Models
Our expertise in genetic engineering techniques, such as CRISPR/Cas9 technology, allows us to generate accurate and reliable models that recapitulate the genetic alterations observed in human SLE.
Optional Models
  • MRL/lpr Model
  • NZB/W F1 Model
  • BXSB Model
  • SPF3 Model
Optional Species Mice, Rats, Non-human primates, Others

In addition to these models, our comprehensive services encompass other models that target specific signaling pathways and molecular targets.

If our services resonate with you, we invite you to contact us whenever works best for you. Let's discuss customizing our solutions to align seamlessly with your objectives and aspirations.


  • Accapezzato, D., et al., "Advances in the Pathogenesis and Treatment of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus." Int J Mol Sci, (2023). 24(7).
  • Lazar, S. and Kahlenberg, J.M., "Systemic Lupus Erythematosus: New Diagnostic and Therapeutic Approaches." Annu Rev Med, (2023). 74: p. 339-352.
  • Yu, H., et al., "Clinical and Immunological Biomarkers for Systemic Lupus Erythematosus." Biomolecules, (2021). 11(7).

All of our services and products are intended for preclinical research use only and cannot be used to diagnose, treat or manage patients.

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