Author(s): Krishnamoorthy G, Saxena A, Mars LT, Domingues HS, Mentele R,
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Abstract We describe here the paradoxical development of spontaneous experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) in transgenic mice expressing a myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein (MOG)-specific T cell antigen receptor (TCR) in the absence of MOG. We report that in Mog-deficient mice (Mog-/-), the autoimmune response by transgenic T cells is redirected to a neuronal cytoskeletal self antigen, neurofilament-M (NF-M). Although components of radically different protein classes, the cross-reacting major histocompatibility complex I-Ab-restricted epitope sequences of MOG35-55 and NF-M18-30 share essential TCR contact positions. This pattern of cross-reaction is not specific to the transgenic TCR but is also commonly seen in MOG35-55-I-Ab-reactive T cells. We propose that in the C57BL/6 mouse, MOG and NF-M response components add up to overcome the general resistance of this strain to experimental induction of autoimmunity. Similar cumulative responses against more than one autoantigen may have a role in spontaneously developing human autoimmune diseases.
This article was published in Nat Med
and referenced in Journal of Multiple Sclerosis