How the study of children with rheumatic diseases identified interferon-α and interleukin-1 as novel therapeutic targets

Virginia Pascual, Florence Allantaz, Pinakeen Patel, A. Karolina Palucka, Damien Chaussabel, Jacques Banchereau

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

57 Citations (Scopus)


Our studies in children with rheumatic diseases have led to the identification of two of the oldest cytokines, type I interferon (IFN) and interleukin 1 (IL-1), as important pathogenic players in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and systemic onset juvenile arthritis (SoJIA), respectively. These findings were obtained by studying the transcriptional profiles of patient blood cells and by assessing the biological and transcriptional effect(s) of active patient sera on healthy blood cells. We also identified a signature that can be used to promptly diagnose SoJIA from other febrile conditions. Finally, our pilot clinical trials using IL-1 blockers have shown remarkable clinical benefits in SoJIA patients refractory to other medications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-59
Number of pages21
JournalImmunological Reviews
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2008
Externally publishedYes



  • Interferon (IFN)
  • Interleukin 1 (IL-1)
  • Microarray
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)
  • Systemic onset juvenile idiopathic arthritis (SOJIA)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology

Cite this