Human endogenous retroviruses and systemic lupus erythematosus

A role of retroviruses in SLE pathogenesis is supported by an increasing body of evidence. A possible retroviral link with SLE was suspected initially because of the similarity of autoimmune manifestations and immune dysregulation between patients who have SLE and those infected with known human retroviruses, such as HIV-1. It has been shown that one third of patients who have SLE produce high-titer antibodies to various retroviral proteins, including Gag, Env, and Nef, and the p24 capsid...