In treating autoimmune diseases, there is much to be learned from the science of transplantation. Much of the innovation in medicine over the past 50 years has been in the field of transplantation, and these breakthroughs are affecting how autoimmune diseases are treated. Standard treatments for autoimmune diseases have frequently involved downregulating the immune system, in a way that is almost identical to standard treatments for organ transplantation. In fact, many drugs specifically developed for transplantation, such as cyclosporine and tacrolimus, are now used for autoimmune diseases.
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