Research ArticleMultiple Sclerosis

Functional inflammatory profiles distinguish myelin-reactive T cells from patients with multiple sclerosis

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Science Translational Medicine  13 May 2015:
Vol. 7, Issue 287, pp. 287ra74
DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.aaa8038

Rethinking myelin-reactive T cells in multiple sclerosis

In patients with multiple sclerosis (MS), the ability of nerves to carry messages is disrupted because of damage to their insulating cover—the myelin sheath. This damage is thought to be caused by the body’s own immune cells; however, immune cells restricted to myelin itself are found in comparable numbers in MS patients and healthy controls. Now, Cao et al. report that myelin-reactive T cells from MS patients are functionally different than those from healthy controls; cells from MS patients are more proinflammatory, whereas cells from controls secrete more of the immunoregulatory cytokine interleukin-10. These data suggest that functional differences in these cells may contribute to the development of disease.

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