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Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology
Volume 2010, Article ID 686480, 4 pages
Review Article

Efficacy and Cytokine Modulating Effects of Tacrolimus in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus: A Review

El Shaddai Arthritis and Rheumatism Specialist Medical Centre, Block 102, #01-258, Towner Road, Singapore 322102

Received 27 February 2010; Accepted 31 March 2010

Academic Editor: Brian Poole

Copyright © 2010 Kam Hon Yoon. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a complex systemic autoimmune disease with involvement of both B cells and cytotoxic T lymphocytes and several cytokines aberrations. Standard therapy for SLE has its limitations. Tacrolimus, a novel calcineurin inhibitor with potent immunosuppressive effects, has been shown in the recent years to be effective in SLE therapy. This paper serves to collate the experimental and clinical data on the efficacy of tacrolimus in the treatment of SLE and lupus nephritis. Tacrolimus as a key component of multitarget therapy in SLE is also discussed. The immunocytokine modulatory effects of tacrolimus are also reviewed with reference to SLE. It can be concluded that tacrolimus has an established role in the management of SLE.