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Revista Brasileira de Reumatologia

Print version ISSN 0482-5004On-line version ISSN 1809-4570


MOTA, Licia Maria Henrique da et al. Drug-induced lupus: from basic to spplied immunology. Rev. Bras. Reumatol. [online]. 2007, vol.47, n.6, pp.431-437. ISSN 0482-5004.

Drug-induced lupus (DIL) has been described as the development of idiopathic systemic lupus erythematous-like symptoms, temporarily associated to the exposition to drugs, and as a rule, the condition is improved with the suspension of the triggering medication. The most classical association is with procainamide and hydralazine. Recently, with the introduction of new drugs in the clinical practice, an increase on the number of medications associated with the occurence of the disease has been reported, and the current list includes almost one hundred drugs associated to the occurrence of DIL. The basic DIL immunologic mechanism, although described for more than 60 years, is not yet fully understood. There are several hypotheses for the drug-induced autoimmunity process, and the phenomenon is generally interpreted as an inappropriate activation of the immune system. Among the several theories proposed, the most accepted ones are: the inhibition of the DNA methylation by some drugs, what would allow the activation of T-cells; the oxidation of some substances by monocytes, what would generate active metabolites that in turn would lead to the activation of antigen-presenting cells and/or the interference of the metabolites of some drugs with the immune system tolerance. Further studies should be conducted in order to elucidate the DIL immunopathogeny with the objective of developing specific treatments based on the better knowledge on the pathogenic mechanisms.

Keywords : drug-induced lupus; immunology; systemic lupus erythematous; drug; autoimmunity.

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