Immune Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP)Chronic ITP affects approximately 100,000 people, with the majority of these cases being in women. ITP is a blood disorder in which the immune system attacks and destroys the body's own blood platelets, which have an important role in the clotting and healing process. ITP patients can suffer bruising, bleeding and fatigue as a result of their low blood platelet counts. Currently marketed therapies aim to raise blood platelet counts, but do not address the etiology of the disorder. The results of Rigel's Phase 2 study, published in Blood (volume 113, number 14), showed that fostamatinib may be effective in treating this rare autoimmune disorder. Discoid Lupus Erythematosus (DLE) DLE is a chronic autoimmune disease of the skin, which affects approximately 300,000 Americans - with an estimated 16,000 additional new cases diagnosed in the US each year. Disc-shaped sores with inflammation, swelling, scaling, scarring, pigment discoloration, and even hair loss characterize the disease. The lesions most commonly appear in sun-exposed areas, predominantly on the face, chest and scalp. Rigel's R333 is a potent, topical JAK and SYK inhibitor that is designed to interrupt pivotal inflammatory cascade signals with the potential to prevent or diminish both acute and chronic symptoms. Results from a Phase 2 clinical study of R333 in DLE are expected in Q4 2013. Dry Eye Dry eye disease is an inflammatory disease of the eye that affects more than 5 million Americans. The disease targets the lacrimal (tear producing) glands of the eye and may be associated with other autoimmune conditions including Sjögren's syndrome, systemic lupus erythematosus and rheumatoid arthritis. Rigel has developed a topical ophthalmic (eye drop) formulation of R348, a JAK and SYK inhibitor, aimed at reducing the inflammation responsible for the symptoms of this disease. Results of a Phase 2 study of R348 in chronic dry eye are expected in Q2 2014.