Autoimmune diseases are chronic, disabling disorders in which underlying defects in the immune response lead the body to attack its own organs and tissues. More than 80 autoimmune diseases have been identified and, for reasons that are not clear, the prevalence of many autoimmune diseases appears to be rising. Autoimmune diseases can affect any organ or organ system. Relatively common autoimmune diseases include rheumatoid arthritis, autoimmune thyroiditis, type 1 diabetes, systemic lupus erythematosus, multiple sclerosis, inflammatory bowel disease, coeliac disease, and psoriasis. Although effective therapies are available for many autoimmune diseases, cures and preventive strategies have yet to be achieved.
A large body of scientific evidence suggests that the autoimmune process may begin years before a person develops signs and symptoms of disease, and experts believe that approaches to prevent the onset of clinical disease would provide enormous health and economic benefits. With that goal in mind, in FY 2011, NIAID and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) invited new and renewal applications from institutions or consortia of institutions to participate in the Cooperative Study Group for Autoimmune Disease Prevention (CSGADP). The study group, established by NIAID and NIDDK in 2001, is a unique, multi-center cooperative program that consists of a closely interactive and collaborative network of investigators. NIAID remains committed to this longstanding program and to its long-term goal of developing safe and effective interventions for preventing autoimmune disease.
Last Updated February 28, 2013
Last Reviewed February 28, 2013