Current treatment options for systemic lupus erythaematosus (SLE) are diverse and poorly defined, and aggressive therapy can be associated with serious toxicity and tolerability issues. There is, therefore, a need for new and improved treatments to be studied thoroughly in well-designed controlled trials. B Cell dysfunction has emerged as a key pathophysiological component of SLE and is a prime target for the development of new agents for a wide range of lupus severity, including advanced disease. Although many current drugs appear to modify B cell function, the advent of new, targeted therapies offers the hope of improved efficacy and a better long-term tolerability profile.
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Funding: Support for the preparation of this manuscript was provided by Genentech, Inc.
Competing interests: None declared.