Living with Lupus can feel very isolating. Not only is it a rare and “invisible” disease, but your Lupus journey will be unlike anyone else’s. DxTerity is trying to change the way we study autoimmune diseases by making Lupus research more personalized. You can help.
Traditional research starts with focusing on drugs
In the early days, clinical trials were organized around a particular drug and were open to anyone with a disease. Often a drug would work, but only for a certain subset of the population. For a long time, it was a mystery why some patients would respond to a treatment while others would not.
The only way to find out if an approved drug would work for you was trial and error. If you’ve ever tried a treatment that didn’t work, you understand the frustration that goes along with this uncertainty: repetitive doctor visits, unwanted side effects, and grappling with insurance companies to pay for a therapy that may or may not be effective for you. It’s like playing roulette with your health.
There’s a better way, and it’s known as precision medicine. New technologies now make it possible to identify the unique molecular signatures that characterize your autoimmune disease. These signatures, called biomarkers can help determine the best treatment for you. Precision medicine is about using biomarkers to predict the right treatment for you at the right time in your health journey.
Precision medicine research starts with focusing on patients
At DxTerity, we believe in patient-centric research. That means conducting clinical studies that explore patient biomarkers first. We’re developing easy to use test kits that determine the status of your biomarkers from a few drops of blood that you can collect at home.
Biomarkers can be informative on their own. For instance, a biomarker known as IFN-1 is known to correlate with increased risk of Lupus Nephritis.1 IFN-1 high patients have also been shown to have increased response to the newest approved Lupus drug, Anifrolumab.2
In the future, biomarkers could help guide our understanding and interpretation of clinical trial results, treatment responses, and lifestyle choices that help prevent flareups. To get to that future, we need to conduct targeted clinical studies to help identify patterns associated with different biomarkers.
Benefits of patient-driven research and precision medicine
Research that starts by getting to know patient biomarkers can help us predict what treatments will likely be effective before clinical trials. That means saving time and money on clinical trials for drugs that will likely never work. It also means limiting patient cohorts for clinical trials to only those patients that are most likely to respond based on their biomarkers.
Because your biomarkers can change over time, tracking biomarkers could even help determine when you’re most likely to respond to a particular treatment. And the best part is, you can help develop tests to measure these biomarkers by joining the ELEVATE study today!
- Arriens, C. et al. Increased Risk of Progression to Lupus Nephritis for Lupus Patients with Elevated Interferon Signature. Submitted (2019).
- Morand EF, Furie R, Tanaka Y, et al. Trial of Anifrolumab in Active Systemic Lupus Erythematosus. N Engl J Med. 2020;382(3):211-221.