When working correctly, the body’s immune system works to protect and defend the body from infections and diseases. For reasons not fully understood, the immune system in some people becomes unable to tell the difference between normal and unhealthy cells. When this occurs, the immune system goes into overdrive and begins to attack the body’s normal, healthy organs and tissues, causing deterioration and destruction. Today, more than 80 autoimmune diseases have been identified, and many more diseases are thought to be autoimmune but have not been scientifically identified as such. Biopharmaceutical research companies are hard at work developing new treatments, with more than 300 medicines currently in the research pipeline for autoimmune diseases.