Autoimmune diseases may be induced by physical and/or chemical environmental factors. A review of the available literature on mercuric chloride, iodine, silicone, anilides, l-tryptophan, vinyl chloride, and canavanine suggests three general mechanisms by which they may induce disease. First, oxidative damage probably is a frequent process involved in disease induction and pathogenesis. Second, certain compounds also may generate antigen-specific immune responses that could then cross-react with selftissues. Other xenobiotics might bind to selftissues and increase self-tissue immunogenicity. Third, physical and chemical agents may also modulate the immune system. Finally, in response to controversies surrounding the influence of human activities on global climate changes, the immunosuppressive effects of ozone and ultraviolet radiation are discussed.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine