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In vivo approaches to investigate ANCA-associated vasculitis: lessons and limitations

Peter Heeringa1* and Mark A Little2

Author affiliations

1 Department of Pathology and Medical Biology, University Medical Centre Groningen, University of Groningen, Hanzeplein 1 EA11, 9713 GZ, Groningen, The Netherlands

2 UCL Centre for Nephrology, Royal Free Hospital, Pond Street, London, NW3 2QP, UK

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Citation and License

Arthritis Research & Therapy 2011, 13:204  doi:10.1186/ar3236

Published: 28 February 2011


Anti-neutrophil cytoplasm autoantibody (ANCA)-associated diseases are autoimmune conditions characterized by necrotizing inflammation of small blood vessels. The immunogenesis and etiology of these conditions are unknown, but our knowledge of the immunopathogenesis has increased considerably in recent years. In this review, we discuss the animal models currently used to investigate the mechanisms of vascular injury and to test novel therapies. We outline their advantages and limitations and propose potential directions for future research.