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1/1. thalidomide for autoimmune disease.

    The therapeutic efficacy of thalidomide in erythema nodosum leprosum suggests that thalidomide might play a useful therapeutic role in other human immune-complex diseases. thalidomide has shown anti-inflammatory or immunosuppressive actions in several animal models. Current evidence suggests that its rapid activity in ENL may result from suppression of neutrophil chemotaxis and phagocytosis. Scattered anecdotal clinical reports of apparent response to thalidomide in various autoimmune diseases are hardly conclusive, but underline the desirability of appropriate pilot trials of thalidomide in autoimmune diseases, particularly those in which immune complex deposition plays a prominent role. Provided that a contraindication in fertile women is strictly observed, thalidomide therapy appears to be quite safe.
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