Therapeutic targeting of macrophages in lupus nephritis

Samantha A. Chalmers, Violeta Chitu, Meera Ramanujam, Chaim Putterman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is an autoimmune disease which results in multiple different end organ pathologies, including the kidney. Lupus nephritis (LN) is one of the most serious complications of SLE, and a leading cause of morbidity and mortality. Current treatment options are suboptimal, involving non-specific immunosuppression which exposes patients to potentially serious side effects with no guarantee of remission. More targeted therapeutic approaches may improve treatment results. Many studies have implicated macrophages as actively contributing to LN pathogenesis in both human and murine disease. Indeed, various studies have shown that depletion of macrophage populations, inhibition of macrophage recruitment, and disruption of inflammatory macrophage activation and polarization have significantly ameliorated nephritis in several different murine LN models. The current literature explores targeting macrophages by several different means, including the CSF-1/CSF-1R signaling axis, the CX3CL1/CX3CR1 signaling axis, the CCL2/CCR2 signaling axis, and Bruton's tyrosine kinase (BTK), all of which hold promise as targets for future LN treatments. These studies highlight the potential benefit of targeting macrophages in LN, and emphasize the need for future investigations to discern the ideal mean(s) for targeting macrophages in LN.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)43-49
Number of pages7
JournalDiscovery Medicine
Issue number108
StatePublished - 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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