Myelin reactive cells in young MSers

Epub: Vargas-Lowy et al. Increased Th17 response to myelin peptides in pediatric MS. Clin Immunol. 2012 Dec 28;146(3):176-184. doi: 10.1016/j.clim.2012.12.008.

Studies of the underlying immune mechanisms of multiple sclerosis (MS) in children may shed light on the initial events of MS pathogenesis. We studied T cell responses to myelin peptides in 10 pediatric MS patients (PMS), 10 pediatric healthy controls (PHC), 10 adult MS patients (AMS) and 10 adult healthy controls (AHC). A significantly higher proportion of divided CD4+ T cell responses in response to myelin peptides by the CFSE assay in PMS compared to PHC at both concentrations of myelin peptide tested (t test, 95% CI, p=0.0067 for MP1; p=0.0086 for MP10), and between PMS and AMS (p=0.0012 at 1μg/mL of myelin peptides, p<0.0001 at 10μg/mL) was found. In addition, T cells with a central memory phenotype producing IL-17 were increased in PMS compared to PHC (p<0.05). IL-7 levels in culture supernatants were elevated in PMS compared to PHC and AMS (t test<0.01).

Young MSers have myelin reactive T cells and this can be seen with CFSE which is a dye which can be loaded into cells and as they divide the amount of dye halves so you can see how many divisions have occurred. These reactive cells are more common in MSers than people without MS. Does this mean that this is causal or could it be because of CNS damage myelin is released and this accounts for the presence of myelin reactive cells in the blood.

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