Lupus nephritis is a major manifestation of systemic lupus erythematosus. Treatment with such immunosuppressive agents as corticosteroids or cyclophosphamide can decrease the progression of lupus nephritis; however, these agents have potentially severe adverse reactions. Therefore, the development of new drugs with fewer side effects is needed. Here, we report 2 patients with lupus that were treated successfully with retinoids. Initially, both patients were treated with 60 mg/d of prednisolone. However, nephrotic syndrome was not improved. Subsequently, treatment with 10 mg/d of all-trans-retinoic acid was started orally and elicited a good response, showing a decrease in proteinuria. Although additional controlled clinical studies are needed to confirm these findings, we suggest that therapy using retinoids may represent a novel approach to the treatment of patients with lupus nephritis.
Copyright 2010 National Kidney Foundation, Inc. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.