Malignancies in systemic lupus erythematosus: An update

Alexandra Ladouceur*, Ann E. Clarke, Rosalind Ramsey-Goldman, Sasha Bernatsky

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Purpose of reviewPatients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) have altered incidences of certain malignancies as compared with the general population. This review summarizes the recent literature on risk of malignancy in SLE and proposed mechanisms for these altered susceptibilities.Recent findingsRecent studies have confirmed previous data showing an increased risk of hematological, lung, thyroid, liver, cervical and vulvovaginal cancers, while demonstrating a decreased risk of breast and prostate cancer. Lymphomagenesis in SLE has been linked to increased activity of multiple inflammatory cytokines as well as possible viral causes. The decreased rates of hormone-sensitive cancers, such as breast and prostate is speculated to be related to the presence of lupus autoantibodies and downregulation of certain proteins in SLE. This knowledge has been utilized to investigate new therapeutic modalities for these malignancies.SummaryRecent data confirm previously reported altered malignancy rates in SLE. There has been some elucidation of mechanisms underlying cancer development in SLE, although additional work is yet to be done.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)678-681
Number of pages4
JournalCurrent opinion in rheumatology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2019


  • breast cancer
  • lymphoma
  • malignancy
  • systemic lupus erythematosus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rheumatology


Dive into the research topics of 'Malignancies in systemic lupus erythematosus: An update'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this