SYSTEMIC LUPUS ERYTHEMATOSUS (SLE)
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DEFINITION AND PATHOGENESIS
Disease of unknown etiology in which tissues and cells undergo damage mediated by tissue-binding autoantibodies and immune complexes. Genetic, environmental, and sex hormonal factors are likely of pathogenic importance. T- and B-cell hyperactivity, production of autoantibodies with specificity for nuclear antigenic determinants, and abnormalities of T-cell function occur.