The Division of Immunotherapy and Autoimmune Diseases (DIAD) at Northwestern University is the only center in the world devoted to a unique area of treatment and research that provides intensive immunosuppression and hematopoietic stem cell transplantation for patients with severe autoimmune diseases.
DIAD pioneered and performed America’s first hematopoietic stem cell transplants to treat: Multiple Sclerosis (MS), Diabetes, Lupus, Crohn’s, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy (CIDP), Phemphigus, Dermatomyositis, Devic’s, Myasthenia Gravis, and Polymositis. We provide exceptional care with unparalleled passion to those we serve.
Diseases Treated All protocols are FDA and IRB approved. Visit www.clinicaltrials.gov for more information on our clinical trials.
Bullous Skin Disorder: (Pemphigus and Pemphigoid) diseases may be acquired or induced or they may be autoimmune in origin. The autoimmune bullous skin disorders are all characterized by the presence of autoantibodies that target distinct adhesion molecules of the epidermis and dermoepidermal basement membrane zone. The consequences of these antibodies are a loss of the targeted protein's adhesive properties, which leads, in turn, to the appearance of blisters and erosions. Like most autoimmune disorders, autoimmune bullous or vesiculobullous skin disorders are more likely to occur in women. Women of childbearing age have the highest risk for developing autoimmune bullous diseases.
Autoimmune Related Retinopathy and Optic Neuropathy (ARRONS): The autoimmune-related retinopathy and optic neuropathy (ARRON) syndrome represents a group of patients with unexplained visual loss who demonstrate antibodies that are reactive with the optic nerve and/or retina. We describe a patient with ARRON syndrome who responded to plasma exchange (PE) followed by intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg).
Chronic Inflammatory Demylinating Polyneuropathy: Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy is believed to be due to immune cells, cells which normally protect the body from foreign infection, but here begin incorrectly attacking the nerves in the body instead. As a result, the affected nerves fail to respond, or respond only weakly, to stimuli causing numbing, tingling, pain, progressive muscle weakness, loss of deep tendon reflexes (areflexia), fatigue, and abnormal sensations..
Crohn’s Disease: is an inflammatory bowel disease. It can causes ulcers from the moth through the rectum. The human immune system is made from cells and different proteins that protect people from infection. It is thought that the body’s immune system reacts abnormally in people with Crohn’s disease, mistaking bacteria, foods, and other substances for being foreign. The immune system’s response is to attack these “invaders.” During this process, white blood cells accumulate in the lining of the intestines, producing chronic inflammation, which leads to ulcerations and bowel injury.
Devic's Disease: or neuromyelitis optica (NMO), is an autoimmune, inflammatory disorder in which a person's own immune system attacks the optic nerves and spinal cord. Spinal cord lesions lead to varying degrees of weakness or paralysis in the legs or arms, loss of sensation (including blindness) and/or bladder and bowel dysfunction.
Idiopathic Inflammatory Myopathy Diseases: Myositis is a disease in which the muscle fibers and skin are inflamed and damaged, resulting in muscle weakness. There are several types of myositis that affect different parts of the body. The persistent inflammation that is associated with myositis develops slowly over weeks to months and often years, with progressive weakening of the muscles.
Morphea: known as a localized scleroderma, is a disorder characterized by excessive collagen deposition leading to thickening of the dermis, subcutaneous tissues, or both. Morphea is classified into plaque, generalized, linear, and deep subtypes according to the clinical presentation and depth of tissue involvement.
Multiple Sclerosis: is a disease in which the fatty myelin sheaths around the axons of the brain and spinal cord are damaged, leading to demyelination and scarring as well as a broad spectrum of signs and symptoms including an inability to walk, vision loss and incontinence.
Myasthenia Gravis: is an autoimmune neuromuscular disease leading to muscle weakness and fatigue. Weakness is caused by circulating antibodies that block acetylcholine receptors at the post-synaptic neuromuscular junction, inhibiting the stimulative effect of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine.
Pulmonary Fibrosis: Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) is a disease of inflammation that results in scarring, or fibrosis, of the lungs. The fibrosis can build up to the point where the lungs are unable to provide oxygen to the tissues of the body.
Rheumatoid Arthritis: Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a long-term disease that leads to inflammation of the joints and surrounding tissues. Joint pain appears. When the lining of the joint becomes inflamed, it gives off more fluid and the joint becomes swollen. Joint pain is often felt on both sides of the body, and may affect the fingers, wrists, elbows, shoulders, hips, knees, ankles, toes, and neck.
Sarcoidosis: Sarcoidosis is a disease in which swelling (inflammation) occurs in the lymph nodes, lungs, liver, eyes, skin, or other tissues.For some, the inflammation is so sever that the disease can impede breathing.
Scleroderma: is a chronic autoimmune disease characterized by fibrosis (or hardening), vascular alterations, and autoantibodies. Patients with scleroderma suffer from symmetrical skin thickening and pulmonary fibrosis.
Systemic Lupus Erthematosus: is a chronic autoimmune connective tissue disease that can affect any part of the body. As occurs in other autoimmune diseases, the immune system attacks the body’s cells and tissue, resulting in inflammation and tissue damage. SLE most often harms the heart, joints, skin, lungs, blood vessels, liver, kidneys, and nervous system. The course of the disease is unpredictable, with periods of flares alternating with remissions.
Systemic Necrotizing Vascultits: is a disorder where there is inflammation of a blood vessel or blood vessels. The inflammation may affect any size blood vessel, anywhere in the body. It may affect either arteries and/or veins. The inflammation may be focal, meaning that it affects a single location within a vessel; or it may be widespread, with areas of inflammation scattered throughout a particular organ or tissue, or even affecting more than one organ system in the body.
Type 1 Diabetes: is a form of diabetes mellitus that results from autoimmune destruction of insulin-producing beta cells of the pancreas .The subsequent lack of insulin leads to increased blood and urine glucose.
Umbilical Cord Blood Stem Cell Injection for Critical Limb Ischemia: Recent studies have suggested that marrow and blood hematopoietic stem cells may contribute to non-hematopoietic tissue repair in peripheral vascular disease. The term critical limb ischemia refers to a condition characterized by chronic ischemic at-rest pain, ulcers, or gangrene in one or both legs attributable to objectively proven arterial occlusive disease.