Lupus Federal Working Group

Reviewed February 29, 2012

To facilitate collaboration among the NIH Institutes, other Federal agencies, voluntary and professional organizations, and industry with an interest in lupus, the NIH established the Lupus Federal Working Group (LFWG) in 2003. The LFWG is led by the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, and includes representatives from all relevant Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) agencies and other Federal departments having an interest in lupus. This includes among others the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, the Office of Research on Women's Health, the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, and other agencies of the Federal government including HHS, Food and Drug Administration, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Voluntary organizations and representatives from the private sector also attend and participate in the meetings of the LFWG.

Information for Researchers

The fiscal year 2005 House Appropriations Committee Report Language directed the NIH to develop a plan to guide the nation's investment in lupus research. To identify the opportunities, priorities and needs in lupus research that should be considered for inclusion in the research plan, a panel/workshop consisting of scientific experts in the field of lupus was brought together for two days of presentations and discussion. The highlights of their conclusions are reported here, in The Future Directions of Lupus Research.

This research plan highlights many unprecedented opportunities to increase our understanding of lupus at the population, individual, and molecular levels, which should ultimately allow the translation of new knowledge into more effective treatments and, eventually, prevention strategies.

The report is organized to mirror current understanding of the disease and to reflect current opportunities for advancement. The plan supplements and enhances ongoing activities of the NIH, most notably the Autoimmune Diseases Research Plan, prepared by the NIH Autoimmune Diseases Coordinating Committee and the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases' Long Range Plan (2010 – 2014), the lead federal agency for research on lupus.