Parasitic infection and autoimmunity

G. Zandman-Goddard*, Y. Shoenfeld

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Systemic lupus erythematosus is the prototypic multi-system autoimmune disease characterized by the production of multiple autoantibodies. The development of disease depends on a genetic predisposition and exposure to environmental factors including UV light, drugs, and infections. The association of parasitic infection and the development of autoimmune disease in general and lupus in particular remains elusive. In this paper, we review the recent evidence for protection from autoimmunity by parasites, models of parasite-related autoimmunity, molecular mimicry, the impact of parasitic molecules on the immune response and the association between parasitic load and the degree of autoimmunity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1144-1148
Number of pages5
Issue number13
StatePublished - 2009


  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Helminths
  • Parasites
  • Protective effect
  • SLE


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