An autoimmune disease is a malfunction of the immune system. The system attacks the body's own tissue or cells and can no longer distinguish between "endogenous" and "exogenous" cells. Chronic inflammation, as well as reactive tissue regeneration are the result. The most severe damage can lead to life-threatening conditions in the worst case.
The genesis of autoimmune diseases is best described as "bad luck and bad genes": environmental factors (stress, infections, hormone changes, etc.) in combination with genetic predisposition play a major role.
The environmental factors are, for example, infections with pathogens that resemble the body's own structures. These pathogens adapt to the host organism to be more difficult to recognize as "foreign" (molecular mimicry). Autoreactive immune cells become activated to fight the pathogen, but they also form memory cells that can trigger autoimmune diseases even years later. When there is sequence or structural homology between foreign antigens and self-antigens, an antibody-mediated cross-reaction can destroy the body’s own cells.
At present, more than 60 autoimmune diseases are known. These can either systemically manifest throughout the body (for example: joints, connective tissue, etc.), confine themselves to specific organs, or even occur together (intermediately).
Organ speCific AutoimmuNE DISEASES
Systemic AutoimmunE DISEASES
IntermediATE Autoimmune DISEASES:
The therapy is largely symptomatic. Normally, the therapy includes anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive drugs, usually cortisone, as this hormone is endogenous and is best tolerated. However, as long-term therapy with cortisone increases the risk of developing Cushing syndrome, more and more so-called "biologicals" are used. These genetically engineered proteins capture inflammatory mediators or block receptors on immune cells. They specifically intervene in the communication between the immune cells and are thus better adapted to the respective disease.
Left untreated, an autoimmune disease worsens over years, so long-term therapy is needed. The prognosis depends on the degree of severity, the type of illness or the organs affected, the intensity of the therapy and the cooperation of the person concerned.
SZABO-SCANDIC offers a wide range of autoimmune diagnostic products. In addition to ELISAs for various diseases, we also offer you RIA kits and immunofluorescence tests of the companies Bios, Human, Immco and Svar.
For further information please contact one of our responsible contact persons.
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