Patients with Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) have a particular intestinal microbiome characterized by a deep dysbiosis the intensity of which is proportional to the severity of the disease; one of the main consequences of this intestinal imbalance is the inability to protect the individual affected by SLE from infections triggered by commensal intestinal bacteria.

A cohort study conducted by Silverman and published in Annals of Rheumatic Diseases1 showed a significant reduction in the common bacterial taxonomy of patients with SLE, registering a five-fold increase of Ruminococco gnavus, belonging to the Lechnospiraceae family, and accompanied by simultaneous reduction of bacterial species that are considered protective. In particular, an increasing index of progression of the disease corresponded to a decrease in C3 and C4 levels, accentuating the subjects’ nephritic symptoms.

The authors believe that bringing back the microbiome to a more physiological balance could greatly improve the weak immune response of individuals affected by SLE, who could also benefit from a more sensitive identification test to identify the earliest stages of the disease.

Pr De Simone, About