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J Neurol Sci. 2013 Aug 15;331(1-2):86-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jns.2013.05.015. Epub 2013 Jun 10.

NK cells and their receptors in naive and rituximab-treated patients with anti-MAG polyneuropathy.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, Osp. S. Andrea, La Spezia, Italy. luanabenedetti@libero.it

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Natural killer (NK) cells can bridge innate and acquired immunity, and play a role in autoimmunity. A few studies evaluated the distribution of NK cells and the expression of their receptors in chronic immune-mediated demyelinating polyneuropathies. We investigated NK cell distribution and NK cell receptor expression in 20 naïve patients with anti-MAG polyneuropathy (MAG-PN).

METHODS:

Using flow cytometry, we analysed NK cells and a series of NK cell receptors in the peripheral blood of patients with MAG-PN, and, as controls, in patients with chronic inflammatory demyelinating peripheral polyradiculoneuropathy (CIDP) and in healthy subjects. Six MAG-PN patients were also tested after rituximab treatment.

RESULTS:

At baseline the percentage of NK cells did not differ among the groups. KIR2DL2 receptor expression in MAG-PN patients was higher, andCD94/NKG2A receptor expression in both MAG-PN and CIDP patients was lower than in healthy controls. These abnormalities did not correlate with any clinical or demographic variable. No modification was found after rituximab therapy.

CONCLUSIONS:

The data suggest that MAG-PN shows abnormalities in NK cell receptors that characterise other autoimmune diseases, and cannot help in differential diagnosis with CIDP. The impairment of the relevant CD94/NKG2A inhibitory pathway, which might play a central role in the development and perpetuation of MAG-PN, warrants further functional investigations.

Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

KEYWORDS:

Anti-MAG antibodies; CD94/NKG2A; IgM; Monoclonal gammopathy; Myelin associated glycoprotein; Natural killer (NK) cells; Rituximab

PMID:
23764364
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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