MOG transmembrane and cytoplasmic domains contain highly stimulatory T-cell epitopes in MS

Michel Varrin-Doyer, Aparna Shetty, Collin M Spencer, Ulf Schulze-Topphoff, Martin S Weber, Claude C.A. Bernard, Thomas Forsthuber, Bruce A C Cree, Anthony J Slavin, Scott S Zamvil

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Objective: Recently, we reported that the 218 amino acid murine full-length myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein (MOG) contains novel T-cell epitopes p119-132, p181-195, and p186-200, located within its transmembrane and cytoplasmic domains, and that p119-132 is its immunodominant encephalitogenic T-cell epitope in mice. Here, we investigated whether the corresponding human MOG sequences contain T-cell epitopes in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) and healthy controls (HC). Methods: Peripheral blood T cells from patients with MS and HC were examined for proliferation to MOG p119-130, p181-195, p186-200, and p35-55 by fluorescence-activated cell sorting analysis using carboxylfluorescein diacetate succinimidyl ester dilution assay. Intracellular production of proinflammatory cytokines was analyzed by flow cytometry. Results: MOG p119-130, p181-195, and p186-200 elicited significantly greater T-cell responses than p35-55 in patients with MS. T cells from patients with MS proliferated significantly more strongly to MOG p119-130 and p186-200 than did T cells from HC. Further, MOG p119-130-specific T cells exhibited Th17 polarization, suggesting this T-cell epitope may be relevant to MS pathogenesis. Conclusions: Transmembrane and cytoplasmic MOG domains contain potent T-cell epitopes in MS. Recognition of these determinants is important when evaluating T-cell responses to MOG in MS and may have implications for development of myelin antigen-based therapeutics.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere20
Number of pages5
JournalNeurology: Neuroimmunology & Neuroinflammation
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2014

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