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J Immunol. 2004 Jul 1;173(1):682-94.

Gammadelta T cells enhance the expression of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis by promoting antigen presentation and IL-12 production.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, Medical University of Lodz, 22 Kopcinskiego Street, 90-153 Lodz, Poland.


Using an adoptive transfer model of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) induced by myelin basic protein (MBP)-reactive lymph node cells (LNC), we have shown that depletion of gammadelta T cells from LNC resulted in diminished severity of EAE in recipient mice, both clinically and histopathologically. The reduced potency of gammadelta T cell-depleted LNC to induce EAE correlated with decreased cell proliferation in response to MBP. The gammadelta T cell effect upon the threshold of MBP-induced LNC proliferation and EAE transfer was restored by reconstitution of gammadelta T cells derived from either MBP-immunized or naive mice, indicating that this effect was not Ag specific. The enhancing effect of gammadelta T cells on MBP-induced proliferation and EAE transfer required direct cell-to-cell contact with LNC. The gammadelta T cell effect upon the LNC response to MBP did not involve a change in expression of the costimulatory molecules CD28, CD40L, and CTLA-4 on TCRalphabeta(+) cells, and CD40, CD80, and CD86 on CD19(+) and CD11b(+) cells. However, depletion of gammadelta T cells resulted in significant reduction in IL-12 production by LNC. That gammadelta T cells enhanced the MBP response and severity of adoptive EAE by stimulating IL-12 production was supported by experiments showing that reconstitution of the gammadelta T cell population restored IL-12 production, and that gammadelta T cell depletion-induced effects were reversed by the addition of IL-12. These results suggest a role for gammadelta T cells in the early effector phase of the immune response in EAE.

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