Autoimmunity 2002 Feb;35(1):21-8
Zamora A, Matejuk A, Silverman M, Vandenbark AA, Offner H.
Neuroimmunology Research, Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Portland, OR 97201, USA.
Freund's incomplete adjuvant (IFA), an aqueous/oil emulsion that is widely used in combination with antigenic proteins and peptides to induce tolerance, is considered to be immunologically inert.
However, sporadic reports indicate that IFA may itself have inhibitory properties on induction of adjuvant induced arthritis and spontaneous diabetes.
In the current study, the effects of IFA/saline were evaluated on the induction of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) in three different strains of mice.
IFA/saline given i.p. in two doses of > 100 microl 10 days apart were found to inhibit EAE induction to varying degrees in all three strains of mice in a dose dependent fashion.
The IFA/saline injections inhibited both mitogen and antigen-induced T cell proliferation, induced elevated secretion of IFN-gamma and IL-10 by neuroantigen specific T cells, and reduced expression of cytokines, chemokines, and chemokine receptors of CNS-infiltrating mononuclear cells.
These data demonstrate for the first time a direct inhibitory effect of IFA/saline on EAE, and re-emphasize the need to properly control experiments using IFA to induce antigen-specific tolerance.