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More MS news articles for March 2004

Complete Protection from Relapsing Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis Induced by Syngeneic B Cells Expressing the Autoantigen

Blood. 2004 Feb 26
Chen CC, Rivera A, Dougherty JP, Ron Y.
Molecular Genetics, Microbiology and Immunology, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey- Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, Piscataway, NJ, USA.

Experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), an animal model for human multiple sclerosis (MS), is a typical CD4(+) T cell mediated autoimmune disease of the central nervous system (CNS) characterized by perivascular inflammation culminating in focal demyelinations.

Like MS, EAE induced by proteolipid protein (PLP) usually follows the form of a relapsing-remitting disease.

We have previously described an immunotherapy model in which infusion of autologous B cells expressing the PLP encephalitogenic determinant induced PLP-specific unresponsiveness and protected mice from induction of EAE.

Here we show that the same treatment when initiated after disease onset, which resembles the clinical situation presented in MS, completely protects all treated animals from further relapses.

We also show that protected animals were unresponsive to PLP as measured by delayed type hypersensitivity (DTH).

This represents a novel immunotherapeutic approach that can be exploited to develop treatments for human MS and other T cell-mediated autoimmune diseases.