NIH News Advisory
National Institute of Arthritis and
Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases

Thursday, October 23, 1997

Elia Ben-Ari
(301) 496-8190

Connie Raab


Thursday, November 6, 1997--12:30 to 2:00 p.m.
Natcher Conference Center, Room A, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Md.

At a Science Writers Briefing on Lupus, held in conjunction with the scientific conference NOVEL PERSPECTIVES ON SYSTEMIC LUPUS ERYTHEMATOSUS: FROM BASIC RESEARCH TO CLINICAL APPLICATIONS, leading experts will describe some of the major questions about lupus that are under study and some of the answers that are emerging. Betty Diamond, M.D., a conference organizer and Professor, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, says that work underway being presented at this briefing is new information that "fundamentally changes our understanding of the pathogenic processes in lupus."
Briefing speakers will include:

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE or lupus) is the prototypical autoimmune disorder. In lupus, the body produces certain proteins called autoantibodies that contribute to inflammation and tissue injury in the joints, skin, kidneys, heart, lungs, blood vessels, and brain. Lupus affects nine times as many women as men, with minority women having as much as a threefold risk over nonminority women. Lupus is the subject of intense investigation; progress in research and medicine has greatly increased both the length and quality of life for lupus patients. Yet this complex disease still presents many questions and challenges as there is still no known cause or cure.

For more information and to register for the Nov. 6 briefing or the Nov. 6-8 conference contact Connie Raab or Elia Ben-Ari, NIAMS Office of Scientific and Health Communications, ph: (301) 496-8190, e-mail: or [The press desk number will be (301) 496-9966.] For your convenience, lunch will be provided during the briefing, courtesy the S.L.E. Foundation, New York, N.Y. Conference details on the Web:

Conference sponsors are: The S.L.E. Foundation; the Lupus Foundation of America; the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS); the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID); the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK); and the NIH Office of Research on Women’s Health.