Hal Scofield, PhD

  • Position: Diabetes Research Member, Professor


The immune system distinguishes self from non-self, and protects the body from foreign invaders such as bacteria. In autoimmune diseases, the immune attack targets self. My research takes a broad scientific approach to systemic lupus erythematosus (lupus) and Sjögren’s.

In Sjögren’s syndrome, autoimmunity targets salivary and lacrimal glands resulting in severe dry eyes and mouth. Some patients have disease involving joints, lungs, peripheral nerves, skin, brain, kidney and white blood cells. We study human Sjögren’s syndrome through the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation Sjögren’s Syndrome Research Clinic, where patients undergo a comprehensive evaluation. We purify antibody secreting cells from salivary glands of patients, and study how these cells and the antibodies cause disease. We are studying mitochondria dysfunction in Sjögren’s and how this may relate to clinical outcomes like fatigue and metabolic syndrome.

Lupus can affect any body tissue or organ, common manifestations involve the skin, joints and kidneys. The disease is found in women about 10 times more often than in men. About 1 in 500 men has an extra X chromosome (47,XXY), and 1 in 1000 women also has an extra X (47,XXX). We have found that 47,XXY men and 47,XXX women are more common among lupus and Sjögren’s syndrome than expected with 47,XXY men having lupus at the same rate as women. On the basis of these findings, we have proposed that the sex bias of these diseases is related to the number of X chromosomes. Our present research is directed at uncovering the molecular basis of the X chromosome dose effect.

Another project is studying autoimmunity in patients with post-traumatic stress disorder. This includes lupus and Sjogren's as well as organ specific autoimmune disease. We are determining whether PTSD patients have hyperactive B lymphocytes. Another project seeks to determine the binding of EBN.



Additional Websites

Health Education
  • Graduate School
  • Masters, History of Medicine (anticipated graduation, 2023) Johns Hopkins University
    Baltimore, MD
  • Residency University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
    Oklahoma City, OK
  • Doctor of Medicine University of Texas Southwestern Medical School
    Dallas, TX
Research Interests:
  • Sex bias in autoimmune disease
  • Genetics of autoimmune disease
  • Clinical expression of autoimmune disease
  • Interferon in the pathogenesis of autoimmune disease
  • Autoimmune disease in PTSD
  • Epstein Barr virus in autoimmune disease
  • And Yet It Moves: Oxidation of the Nuclear Autoantigen La/SS-B Is the Driving Force for Nucleo-Cytoplasmic Shuttling 2021

    Int J Mol Sci 22, 2021 September, PMID: 34575862, PMCID: PMC8470643

  • Dietary Strawberries Improve Cardiometabolic Risks in Adults with Obesity and Elevated Serum LDL Cholesterol in a Randomized Controlled Crossover Trial 2021

    Nutrients. 2021 Apr 23;13(5):1421. doi: 10.3390/nu13051421. PMID: 33922576, PMCID: PMC8145532

  • Baseline disease activity influences subsequent achievement of patient acceptable symptom state in Sjögren's syndrome 2021

    Rheumatology (Oxford). 2021 Jun 18;60(6):2714-2724. PMID: 33188390

  • Consensus Guidelines for Evaluation and Management of Pulmonary Disease in Sjögren's 2021

    Chest. 2021 Feb;159(2):683-698. PMID: 33075377

  • American Indians Have a Higher Risk of Sjögren's Syndrome and More Disease Activity Than European Americans and African Americans 2020

    Arthritis Care Res (Hoboken). 2020 Aug;72(8):1049-105 PMID: 31199565, PMCID: PMC6911033

  • Characterization of cxorf21 Provides Molecular Insight Into Female-Bias Immune Response in SLE Pathogenesis 2019

    Front Immunol. 2019 Oct 21;10:2160. PMID: 31695690 PMCID: PMC6816314

  • Lysosomal pH Is Regulated in a Sex Dependent Manner in Immune Cells Expressing CXorf21 2019

    Front Immunol. 2019 Apr 2;10:578. PMID: 31001245 PMCID: PMC6454867