Autoimmunity in Endocrine Disease

  • Jay Silverberg
  • Robert Volpé


It is a truism that developments in one discipline often unexpectedly illuminate a second area. Thus, recent illuminating advances in immunology have led to new understandings of the pathogenetic mechanisms of many hitherto obscure endocrine disorders. When an endocrine organ is the target of an immune assault, the dysfunction usually manifests itself as gland failure; however, in at least one disorder, Graves’ disease, the aberration in immune function is expressed as hyperfunction of the target endocrine gland. In the following discussion, we will detail the evidence that favors an immune basis for certain disorders affecting the thyroid gland, the adrenal cortex, the endocrine pancreas, the gonads, the parathyroid glands, and even the pituitary gland.


Migration Inhibition Factor Human Thyroid Endocrine Disease Subacute Thyroiditis Thyroid Antigen 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jay Silverberg
    • 1
    • 2
  • Robert Volpé
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Endocrinology Research LaboratoryThe Wellesley HospitalTorontoCanada
  2. 2.Department of MedicineUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada

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