Treatment of SLE and Secondary Sjogren's Syndrome with Belimumab
Journal of Immunobiology
Belimumab neutralizes the soluble form of B-cell activating factor and is FDA-approved for treating Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE). In this retrospective analysis 16 female SLE patients had been treated with belimumab according to FDA guidelines along with any immunosuppressive drugs or antimalarial drugs they had previously been prescribed, in addition to prednisone. Thirteen of 16 patients presented with serologic evidence of positive antinuclear antibody titer while several other SLE
... veral other SLE patients also had clinical evidence of secondary Sjogren's Syndrome (2°SS), the latter supported by sicca symptoms and positive anti-Sjogren's-syndrome-related antigen A antibody titer. Changes in the SLE symptoms after belimumab therapy was assessed by the recipient's responses on the Short Form-36 questionnaire. Ten of the 16 SLE patients reported a decrease in arthralgias or in symptoms of arthritis while fatigue was reduced in 9/16 patients. However, SLE patients with sicca symptoms failed to show any change in the Short Form-36 score after treatment with belimumab. In conclusion, although the results in this small cohort study supported the use of belimumab as an adjunctive therapy for SLE, sicca symptoms associated with 2°SS did not appear to respond to belimumab.