This is a study looking at the effects of Belimumab, a medication approved by the FDA to treat lupus, in people who have been recently diagnosed with lupus. It proposes that the early use of Belimumab may prevent long-term tissue damage from the disease. The study will last 2 years with clinic visits every 4 weeks.
Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE, lupus) is an autoimmune disorder characterized by dysregulated immune responses and subsequent production of autoantibodies. In recent years, data suggests that changes in certain kinds of immune cells, dendritic cells, affect development of lupus. The purpose of this study is to find out how incorrect directions are given to immune blood cells (specifically, dendritic cells) of patients with lupus, with a focus on differences between females and males.