NIH News Advisory
NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH
National Institute of Arthritis and
Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases

FOR RELEASE
Monday, September 29, 1997

Elia Ben-Ari
(301) 496-8190
benarie@od.niams.nih.gov

Connie Raab
raabc@od.niams.nih.gov

First National Scientific Conference
on Lupus Brings Together Basic Scientists, Clinicians
WHAT:
This 2-day conference at the NIH will cover systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), the prototypical autoimmune disorder. This chronic disease can cause 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. The conference, a collaboration between lupus voluntary organizations and four components of the NIH, will bring together basic researchers and clinicians to discuss:

WHY:

Progress in research and medicine has greatly increased both the length and quality of life for lupus patients. Yet 50 years after its identification as an autoimmune disease, lupus still presents many questions. Scientists from a range of fields are gathering at this conference to review basic scientific research and how it applies to the clinical disease. Advances in lupus have the potential to help patients as well as further research in other fields, such as vaccine development and transplantation.

WHO:

Leading investigators in immunology, cell biology, genetics, and molecular biology are participating. Conference sponsors are the SLE Foundation (New York City); the Lupus Foundation of America; the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS), NIH; the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, NIH; the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, NIH; and the Office of Research on Women's Health, NIH;

WHEN:

November 6-8, 1997 (press briefing to be held midday November 6)

WHERE:

Natcher Conference Center, Building 45, NIH, Bethesda, Maryland

CONTACT:

Connie Raab or Elia Ben-Ari, NIAMS (301) 496-8190, fax (301) 480-2814, raabc@od.niams.nih.gov, or benarie@od.niams.nih.gov. Program details are available on the World Wide Web at http://www.nih.gov/niams/news/sleconf.htm.