Fifteen Lupus Research Institute-Funded Scientists Present New Findings in Lupus at American College of Rheumatology Meeting

Sets New Record for Institute Advances Reported at Any One Meeting to Date

November 9, 2006 - New York, NY – The Lupus Research Institute (LRI) announced today that 15 of its funded scientists will present their research findings at the 2006 Annual Scientific Meeting of the American College of Rheumatology (ACR), held November 11-15 in Washington, D.C. The topics covered range from lupus cardiovascular and kidney disease to the identification and validation of biomarkers and, in keeping with the Lupus Research Institute's mission, represent a variety of unconventional approaches to the challenges of lupus.

"This is outstanding news," said Margaret Dowd, president of the Institute. "It's confirmation yet again of the power of the Lupus Research Institute strategy for uncovering new answers to this devastating autoimmune disease. Without our support, these highly original and even high-risk yet brilliant hypotheses would likely never have been tested. But we did fund them, and now their results are being heard at a conference attended by thousands of physicians and scientists, and reported to thousands more."

Eleven of the 15 scientists presenting are recipients of LRI Novel Research Grants, which provide $300,000 over 3 years to explore novel ideas about the cause, development, and treatment of systemic lupus. Three LRI investigators will also present on work funded through the ACR/LRI Lupus Fellowship program, a mentored post-doctoral award designed to encourage qualified physicians to develop careers in lupus research.

"The LRI is leading the way in novel lupus research," said Dowd. "And we couldn't be more proud of our scientists—or more hopeful for the millions of people with lupus who struggle with the disease every day."

LRI Novel Research Grant Recipients Presenting at the 2006 ACR Meeting:

Timothy W. Behrens, MD, University of Minnesota Medical School: A Large-Scale Proteomics Approach to Validate Interferon-Inducible Chemokines as Serum Biomarkers of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) Disease Activity

Susan A. Boackle, MD, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center: Association of a Common Haplotype of Complement Receptor 2 (CR2) with Increased Risk of SLE

Silvia Bolland, PhD, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, National Institutes of Health: Genetic Modifiers of SLE and Btk-Dependent Anti-RNA B Cells in Yaa Mice Due to Tlr7 Gene Duplication

Marcus Clark, MD, University of Chicago: B Lymphocytes and Plasma Cells in Human Lupus Nephritis

Anne Davidson, MD, Columbia University: Remission of IFNa Induced SLE in NZB/W Mice with Cyclophosphamide/CTLA4Ig But Not Mycophenolate Mofetil /CTLA4Ig, Presentation 1057, Poster 316

Umesh Deshmukh, PhD, University of Virginia: Progression to Renal Failure in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus is Determined by Regional T Cell Activation and Gender Dependent End-Organ Responses; Expression Profiles in Different Stages of Renal Disease in a Mouse Model of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

Bevra Hahn, MD, University of California at Los Angeles: The Novel Biomarker Pro-inflammatory HDL is Associated With Carotid Artery Plaque in Women With SLE

Mariana J. Kaplan, MD, University of Michigan: Abnormal Vascular Repair In Lupus: A Link To Premature Atherosclerosis?; Increased Endothelial Cell Apoptosis in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) Correlates With Anatomical Evidence of Atherosclerosis: A Biomarker for Premature Cardiovascular Disease?

Theresa T. Lu, MD, PhD, Hospital for Special Surgery: Lymph Node Vascular Growth

Luminita Pricop, MD, Hospital for Special Surgery: Decreased Cross-Presentation of Antigen-Antibody Complexes to CD8+ T Lymphocytes Following Engagement of FcgRIIb in Immature Dendritic Cells

Robert A. S. Roubey, MD, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill: Factor VIIa-Antithrombin Complexes as a Measure of Tissue Factor Activity in Patients with Antiphospholipid Antibodies: A Potential Biomarker for Thrombotic Risk

Victoria P. Werth, MD, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine: The CLASI is a Responsive Instrument to Measure Activity and Damage in Patients with Cutaneous Lupus Erythematosus

ACR/LRI Fellows Presenting at the 2006 ACR Meeting:

Ingrid B. Avalos, MD, Vanderbilt University Medical Center: Decreased Insulin Sensitivity in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus is Associated with Inflammation and Cardiovascular Risk Factors; Augmentation Index But not Pulse Wave Velocity is Independently Associated with Coronary Artery Calcification in Rheumatoid Arthritis

Sonwoo Lee, MD, University of California, Los Angeles: Treatment with Recombinant Galectin-1 Affects Lipid Raft Formation and T Cell Activation with Significant Delay of Clinical Disease in Murine Lupus

Maureen McMahon, MD, University of California, Los Angeles: The Novel Biomarker Pro-inflammatory HDL is Associated With Carotid Artery Plaque in Women With SLE

About the Lupus Research Institute

Pioneering Discovery to prevent, treat and cure lupus. The Lupus Research Institute (LRI), the country’s only nonprofit organization singularly devoted to novel research in lupus, champions innovation, encourages scientific creativity and risks exploring uncharted territory to bring new scientific solutions to the complex and dangerous autoimmune disease of lupus. Founded by families and shaped by scientists, the Institute mandates sound science and rigorous peer review to uncover and support only the highest ranked novel research. Its bold and proven research strategy places the LRI at the forefront of lupus science as the Institute consistently achieves the breakthrough discoveries, novel insights and solid results that are changing the course of lupus research and bringing new hope to people with lupus nationwide.

To learn more about lupus and the Lupus Research Institute, visit www.lupusresearchinstitute.org.