AVEMAR (a new benzoquinone-containing natural product) administration interferes with the Th2 response in experimental SLE and promotes amelioration of the disease

Lupus. 2001;10(9):622-7. doi: 10.1191/096120301682430203.


The potential of oral treatment with AVEMAR (AVEMAR), a new benzoquinone-containing fermentation product of wheat germ, on features of experimental systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) in naive mice, induced by idiotypic manipulation, was studied. We assessed the effect of AVEMAR on the profile of autoantibody production and the response of Th1/Th2 related cytokines as well as the clinical picture of experimental SLE in the SLE-induced mice. When the product was given in the pre-immunization period, down-regulation of autoantibody production (anti-dsDNA, mouse 16/6 Id, and anti-histones) following treatment with AVEMAR was noted (eg anti-dsDNA decreased from 0.898+/-0.097 OD at 405 nm to 0.519+/-0.103 OD following treatment). This effect was sustained for at least 4 weeks after discontinuation of the therapy. Serological manifestations associated with a delay in Th2 response (IL-4 and IL-10) were recorded (eg IL-4 decreased from 91.7+/-8.11 to 59.55+/-7.78 ng/ml in splenocyte condition media). The mice showed normal ESR, WBC and less than 100 mg/dl of protein in the urine in comparison to > 300 mg/dl protein in the SLE non-treated mice. In conclusion, oral intake of AVEMAR can ameliorate the clinical manifestations of experimental SLE, via affecting the Th1/Th2 network inhibiting Th2 response.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Autoantibodies / blood
  • Female
  • Interferon-gamma / biosynthesis
  • Interleukin-10 / biosynthesis
  • Interleukin-2 / biosynthesis
  • Interleukin-4 / biosynthesis
  • Lectins / pharmacology*
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / drug therapy*
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / immunology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Plant Lectins
  • Th1 Cells / drug effects
  • Th1 Cells / immunology
  • Th1 Cells / metabolism
  • Th2 Cells / drug effects*
  • Th2 Cells / immunology*
  • Th2 Cells / metabolism
  • Triticum


  • Autoantibodies
  • Avemar
  • Interleukin-2
  • Lectins
  • Plant Extracts
  • Plant Lectins
  • Interleukin-10
  • Interleukin-4
  • Interferon-gamma