Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Clin Exp Immunol. 2003 Mar;131(3):517-27.

T cell Vbeta repertoires in childhood vasculitides.

Author information

  • 1Department of Nephrourology, Institute of Child Health, 30 Guilford St, London, UK, WC1N 1EH.


Superantigens (SAgs) are potent stimulators of T cells bearing specific Vbeta T cell receptors (TCR) and may play a role in the aetiopathogenesis of systemic vasculitis, although this remains contentious. To investigate the possible aetiological role of SAgs, this study examined peripheral blood T cell Vbeta repertoires in children with systemic vasculitis. FACS analysis of 17 different peripheral blood T cell Vbeta families was performed in 20 healthy control children, 27 disease control children with nonvasculitic inflammatory disease, 25 children with primary systemic vasculitis, six patients with Kawasaki disease (KD) and six patients with Henoch-Schönlein purpura (HSP). There was a significantly increased variance of CD4 Vbeta12 and Vbeta17, and CD8 Vbeta1 in the primary systemic vasculitis group compared to control and disease controls. Moreover, 80% of the primary systemic vasculitis children had one or more CD4 Vbeta expansions or deletions, compared with 30% of controls (P < 0.002), and 37% of the disease controls (P < 0.002). In the KD group, the mean percentage of CD4 Vbeta2 T cells was higher than in controls or disease controls. In the HSP group, there was no consistent skewing of the T cell Vbeta repertoire. We have observed changes in the T cell Vbeta repertoire in children with vasculitis over and above those observed in disease controls. While these data provide impetus for further research into this contentious field, they do not resolve unequivocally the question of the role of SAgs in childhood vasculitic syndromes.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Wiley Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk