Antigen specific safety step closer.

Peschl P, Reindl M, Schanda K, Sospedra M, Martin R, Lutterotti A.Antibody responses following induction of antigen-specific tolerance with antigen-coupled cells. Mult Scler. 2014 Sep 8. pii: 1352458514549405. [Epub ahead of print]

We have recently demonstrated the safety and tolerability of a novel therapeutic regimen employing autologous blood cells chemically coupled with seven myelin peptides to induce antigen-specific tolerance in MS (ETIMS study). The aim of the current study was an extended safety analysis to assess the effect of the ETIMS approach on antibodies to common autoantigens, the myelin peptides used and common recall antigens. None of the patients showed induction of autoantibody responses. One patient had a measurable myelin peptide-specific response at baseline, which was reduced after treatment. Total immunoglobulins and recall antibody responses showed no significant change.

We have commented on the main study already  This reports on the production of T cell unresponsiveness. This has the potential to inhibit immune diseae without the side effect problems or current DMT. The fear is that it could drive a B cell response which may have been a problem with a Th2 biasing mechanism of action. However the main model of action is the induction of T cell anergy and depletion and this can remove B cell responses. In this case it did not make them so this is a safety hurdle removed for this apporach. 

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