Alan Ebringer

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Alan Ebringer B.Sc, MD, FRCP, FRACP, FRCPath (born 12 February 1936) is an Australian immunologist, professor at King’s College in the University of London. He is also an Honorary Consultant Rheumatologist in the Middlesex Hospital, now part of the UCH School of Medicine. He is known for his research in the field of autoimmune disease. [1]

Kings College London public research university located in London, United Kingdom

King's College London is a public research university located in London, United Kingdom, and a founding constituent college of the federal University of London. King's was established in 1829 by King George IV and Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, when it received its first royal charter, and claims to be the fourth oldest university institution in England. In 1836, King's became one of the two founding colleges of the University of London. In the late 20th century, King's grew through a series of mergers, including with Queen Elizabeth College and Chelsea College of Science and Technology, the Institute of Psychiatry, the United Medical and Dental Schools of Guy's and St Thomas' Hospitals and the Florence Nightingale School of Nursing and Midwifery.

University of London federal public university in London, United Kingdom

The University of London is a collegiate federal research university located in London, England. As of October 2018, the university contains 18 member institutions, central academic bodies and research institutes. The university has over 52,000 distance learning external students and 161,270 campus-based internal students, making it the largest university by number of students in the United Kingdom.


Early life and education

Ebringer was educated in Melbourne High School, and graduated in Medicine from the University of Melbourne.

University of Melbourne Australian public university located in Melbourne, Victoria

The University of Melbourne is a public research university located in Melbourne, Australia. Founded in 1853, it is Australia's second oldest university and the oldest in Victoria. Melbourne's main campus is located in Parkville, an inner suburb north of the Melbourne central business district, with several other campuses located across Victoria.


Ebringer worked for one year as a Medical Registrar at the Walter Eliza Hall Institute under Sir Macfarlane Burnet and Prof. Ian Mackay where he developed an interest in autoimmune diseases.

Ian Mackay is an Australian immunologist. He is noted for his work on autoimmune diseases and is considered to have made major contributions to this field. Ian Mackay is a professor at Monash University and is currently writing a new edition of his textbook on autoimmune disease.

Autoimmune disease Human disease

An autoimmune disease is a condition arising from an abnormal immune response to a normal body part. There are at least 80 types of autoimmune diseases. Nearly any body part can be involved. Common symptoms include low grade fever and feeling tired. Often symptoms come and go.

He moved to London in the 1970s, working first with Ivan Roitt in the Department of Immunology at the Middlesex Hospital. In 1972, he formed the Immunology Unit at Queen Elizabeth College, now linked to King’s College [2] which was located in the Departments of Biochemistry, Microbiology and Biology studying autoimmune diseases. About 22 Ph.D. students graduated from the Immunology Unit over the subsequent thirty years. Ebringer is the pioneer researcher behind autoimmune disease and "molecular mimicry," and was head of the Middlesex AS (Ankylosing Spondylitis) Clinic, London, for nearly 20 years where the London AS Diet   was employed as successful therapy in AS patients.

Queen Elizabeth College

Queen Elizabeth College (QEC) had its origins in the Ladies' Department of King's College, London, England, opened in 1885. The first King's 'extension' lectures for ladies were held at Richmond in 1871, and from 1878 in Kensington, with chaperones in attendance.

Ebringer was among the first to investigate the relationship between autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and certain bacteria, Proteus mirabilis in particular (Ankylosing Spondylitis and Klebsiella pneumoniae; Multiple Sclerosis and Acinetobacter calcoaceticus). [3] His findings have been cited by proponents of herbal medicine [4] Low-starch and gluten-free diets. [5]


Ebringer is the author of several books on the subject of autoimmune disease, including Rheumatoid arthritis and Proteus. and Ankylosing spondylitis and Klebsiella (Springer publications) He also published a number of articles on the subject in peer reviewed journals. [6] [7]

Related Research Articles

Arthritis form of joint disorder that involves inflammation of one or more joints

Arthritis is a term often used to mean any disorder that affects joints. Symptoms generally include joint pain and stiffness. Other symptoms may include redness, warmth, swelling, and decreased range of motion of the affected joints. In some types other organs are also affected. Onset can be gradual or sudden.

Rheumatoid arthritis An arthritis that is an autoimmune disease which attacks healthy cells and tissue located in joint.

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a long-term autoimmune disorder that primarily affects joints. It typically results in warm, swollen, and painful joints. Pain and stiffness often worsen following rest. Most commonly, the wrist and hands are involved, with the same joints typically involved on both sides of the body. The disease may also affect other parts of the body. This may result in a low red blood cell count, inflammation around the lungs, and inflammation around the heart. Fever and low energy may also be present. Often, symptoms come on gradually over weeks to months.

Autoimmunity is the system of immune responses of an organism against its own healthy cells and tissues. Any disease that results from such an aberrant immune response is termed an "autoimmune disease". Prominent examples include celiac disease, diabetes mellitus type 1, sarcoidosis, systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), Sjögren's syndrome, eosinophilic granulomatosis with polyangiitis, Hashimoto's thyroiditis, Graves' disease, idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura, Addison's disease, rheumatoid arthritis (RA), ankylosing spondylitis, polymyositis (PM), dermatomyositis (DM) and multiple sclerosis (MS). Autoimmune diseases are very often treated with steroids.

Rheumatology is a branch of medicine devoted to the diagnosis and therapy of rheumatic diseases. Physicians who have undergone formal training in rheumatology are called rheumatologists. Rheumatologists deal mainly with immune-mediated disorders of the musculoskeletal system, soft tissues, autoimmune diseases, vasculitides, and heritable connective tissue disorders.

Ankylosing spondylitis a type of arthritis in which there is long term inflammation of the joints of the spine

Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is a type of arthritis in which there is long term inflammation of the joints of the spine. Typically the joints where the spine joins the pelvis are also affected. Occasionally other joints such as the shoulders or hips are involved. Eye and bowel problems may also occur. Back pain is a characteristic symptom of AS, and it often comes and goes. Stiffness of the affected joints generally worsens over time.


Human leukocyte antigen (HLA) B27 is a class I surface antigen encoded by the B locus in the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) on chromosome 6 and presents antigenic peptides to T cells. HLA-B27 is strongly associated with ankylosing spondylitis (AS), and other associated inflammatory diseases referred to as "spondyloarthropathies". Diseases associated with the HLA-B27 subtype can be remembered with the mnemonic PAIR, and include Psoriasis, Ankylosing spondylitis, Inflammatory bowel disease, and Reactive arthritis.

Rheumatism or rheumatic disorder is an umbrella term for conditions causing chronic, often intermittent pain affecting the joints and/or connective tissue. The study of, and therapeutic interventions in, such disorders is called rheumatology. The term "rheumatism", however, does not designate any specific disorder, but covers at least 200 different conditions.

Psoriatic arthritis syndrome that occurs in humans with psoriasis who also experience symptoms similar to arthritis

Psoriatic arthritis is a long-term inflammatory arthritis that occurs in people affected by the autoimmune disease psoriasis. The classic feature of psoriatic arthritis is swelling of entire fingers and toes with a sausage-like appearance. This often happens in association with changes to the nails such as small depressions in the nail (pitting), thickening of the nails, and detachment of the nail from the nailbed. Skin changes consistent with psoriasis frequently occur before the onset of psoriatic arthritis but psoriatic arthritis can precede the rash in 15% of affected individuals. It is classified as a type of seronegative spondyloarthropathy.

Etanercept is a biopharmaceutical that treats autoimmune diseases by interfering with tumor necrosis factor by acting as a TNF inhibitor. It has U.S. F.D.A. approval to treat rheumatoid arthritis, juvenile idiopathic arthritis and psoriatic arthritis, plaque psoriasis and ankylosing spondylitis. TNF-alpha is the "master regulator" of the inflammatory (immune) response in many organ systems. Autoimmune diseases are caused by an overactive immune response. Etanercept has the potential to treat these diseases by inhibiting TNF-alpha.

Adalimumab pharmaceutical drug

Adalimumab, sold under the trade name Humira among others, is a medication used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, chronic psoriasis, hidradenitis suppurativa, juvenile idiopathic arthritis, and uveitis. In rheumatoid arthritis, adalimumab has a response rate similar to methotrexate, and in combination, it nearly doubles the response rate of methotrexate alone.

Reactive arthritis arthritis that is an autoimmune disease which develops due to an infection located elsewhere in the body

Reactive arthritis, formerly known as Reiter's syndrome, is a form of inflammatory arthritis that develops in response to an infection in another part of the body (cross-reactivity). Coming into contact with bacteria and developing an infection can trigger the disease. By the time the patient presents with symptoms, often the "trigger" infection has been cured or is in remission in chronic cases, thus making determination of the initial cause difficult.

Inflammatory arthritis is a group of diseases which includes: rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthropathy, inflammatory bowel disease, adult-onset Still's disease, scleroderma, juvenile idiopathic arthritis and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE).

Leflunomide chemical compound

Leflunomide is an immunosuppressive disease-modifying antirheumatic drug (DMARD), used in active moderate-to-severe rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis. It is a pyrimidine synthesis inhibitor that works by inhibiting dihydroorotate dehydrogenase.

Biological response modifiers (BRMs) are substances that modify immune responses. They can be both endogenous and exogenous, and they can either enhance an immune response or suppress it. Some of these substances arouse the body's response to an infection, and others can keep the response from becoming excessive. Thus they serve as immunomodulators in immunotherapy, which can be helpful in treating cancer and in treating autoimmune diseases, such as some kinds of arthritis and dermatitis. Most BRMs are biopharmaceuticals (biologics), including monoclonal antibodies, interleukin 2, interferons, and various types of colony-stimulating factors. "Immunotherapy makes use of BRMs to enhance the activity of the immune system to increase the body's natural defense mechanisms against cancer", whereas BRMs for rheumatoid arthritis aim to reduce inflammation.

Golimumab pharmaceutical drug

Golimumab is a human monoclonal antibody which is used as an immunosuppressive drug and marketed under the brand name Simponi. Golimumab targets tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha), a pro-inflammatory molecule and hence is a TNF inhibitor. Profound reduction in C-reactive protein (CRP) levels, interleukin (IL)-6, intercellaular adhesion molecules (ICAM)-1, matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-3, and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) demonstrates golimumab as an effective modulator of inflammatory markers and bone metabolism.

Jacques Forestier was a French internist who was a pioneer in the field of rheumatology.

Sir Marc Feldmann,, is an Australian immunologist, and a professor at the University of Oxford.

Secukinumab, trade name Cosentyx, is a human IgG1κ monoclonal antibody that binds to the protein interleukin (IL)-17A, and is marketed by Novartis for the treatment of psoriasis, ankylosing spondylitis, and psoriatic arthritis.

Pamela Russell is an Australian immunologist.

Dr William Sidney Charles Copeman was a rheumatologist and a medical historian, best remembered for his contributions to the study of arthritic disease.


  1. Duncan Dartrey Adams; Christopher Dartrey Adams (13 August 2013). Autoimmune Disease: Pathogenesis, Genetics, Immunotherapy, Prophylaxis and Principles for Organ Transplantation. Springer Science & Business Media. pp. 44–. ISBN   978-94-007-6937-3.
  2. New Scientist. IPC Magazines. 1995.
  3. Leo Galland, M.D. (2 February 2011). Power Healing: Use the New Integrated Medicine to Cure Yourself. Random House Publishing Group. pp. 134–. ISBN   978-0-307-77938-0.
  4. Kerry Bone; Simon Mills (8 January 2013). Principles and Practice of Phytotherapy: Modern Herbal Medicine. Elsevier Health Sciences. pp. 155–. ISBN   0-7020-5297-3.
  5. Lucille Cholerton (1 February 2012). Spotlight on Gluten: New Symptoms for the New Millennium? Or Long-Standing Symptoms Now Being Recognized?. Strategic Book Publishing. pp. 50–. ISBN   978-1-61204-110-0.
  6. Ellen Kamhi; Eugene R. Zampieron (9 May 2012). An Alternative Medicine Guide to Arthritis: Reverse Underlying Causes of Arthritis with Clinically Proven Alternative Therap ies. Potter/TenSpeed/Harmony. pp. 578–. ISBN   978-0-307-78956-3.
  7. Eugene R. Zampieron; Ellen Kamhi (1999). Arthritis: An Alternative Medicine Definitive Guide. Books. ISBN   978-1-887299-15-2.