JAK inhibitor improves type i interferon induced damage: Proof of concept in dermatomyositis

Leandro Ladislau, Xavier Suárez-Calvet, Ségolène Toquet, Océane Landon-Cardinal, Damien Amelin, Marine Depp, Mathieu P. Rodero, Denisa Hathazi, Darragh Duffy, Vincent Bondet, Corinna Preusse, Boris Bienvenu, Flore Rozenberg, Andreas Roos, Claudia F. Benjamim, Eduard Gallardo, Isabel Illa, Vincent Mouly, Werner Stenzel, Gillian Butler-BrowneOlivier Benveniste, Yves Allenbach

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

92 Citations (Scopus)


© The Author(s) (2018). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: Journals.permissions@oup.com. Dermatomyositis is an acquired auto-immune disease characterized by skin lesions and muscle-specific pathological features such as perifascicular muscle fibre atrophy and vasculopathy. Dermatomyositis patients display an upregulation of type I interferon-inducible genes in muscle fibres, endothelial cells, skin and peripheral blood. However, the effect of type I interferon on muscle tissue has not yet been determined. Our aim was to study the pathogenicity of type I interferon in vitro and to evaluate the efficacy of the type I interferon pathway blockade for therapeutic purposes. The activation of type I interferon in differentiating myoblasts abolished myotube formation with reduced myogenin expression while in differentiated myotubes, we observed a reduction in surface area and an upregulation of atrophy-associated genes. In vitro endothelial cells exposure to type I interferon disrupted vascular network organization. All the pathogenic effects observed in vitro were abolished by ruxolitinib. Finally, four refractory dermatomyositis patients were treated with ruxolitinib and improvement ensued in skin lesions, muscle weakness and a reduced serum type I interferon levels and interferon-inducbile genes scores. We propose JAK inhibition as a mechanism-based treatment for dermatomyositis, a finding that is relevant for the design of future clinical trials targeting dermatomyositis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1609-1621
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2018


  • JAK inhibitor
  • autoimmune diseases
  • dermatomyositis
  • type I interferon


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