The Pubmed article:Discovery: How Sunlight Triggers Lupus
Boston Researcher Starts to Unravel the Mystery
While scientists have long known that sunlight’s ultraviolet rays can trigger cutaneous (skin) as well as systemic lupus in some people, it’s been unclear exactly how this happens.
Now Brigham and Women’s Hospital investigator Vicki Rubin Kelley, PhD, unravels some of the mystery, reporting in November 2008’s Journal of Immunology that the damaging sequence is triggered when sunlight stimulates the skin to produce something called Colony Stimulating Factor 1 (CSF-1).
Exciting future studies are being planned, she said, to explore whether blocking CSF-1 with a topical lotion or other agent might be more effective than today's sunscreens in preventing cutaneous and systemic lupus.