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J Clin Invest. 2000 Mar;105(5):643-51.

CD28-B7 blockade prevents the development of experimental autoimmune glomerulonephritis.

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Division of Medicine, Imperial College School of Medicine, Hammersmith Hospital, London W12 ONN, United Kingdom.


Experimental autoimmune glomerulonephritis (EAG), an animal model of Goodpasture's disease, can be induced in Wistar Kyoto (WKY) rats by a single injection of rat glomerular basement membrane (GBM) in adjuvant. EAG is characterized by circulating and deposited anti-GBM antibodies, accompanied by focal necrotizing glomerulonephritis with crescent formation. The role of T cells in the pathogenesis of EAG remains unclear. T-cell costimulation is provided by ligation of CD28 with either B7.1 (CD80) or B7.2 (CD86) on antigen-presenting cells, and can be inhibited by a soluble form of CTLA4 (CTLA4-Ig) that binds to both B7.1 and B7.2. We examined the effect of CD28-B7 blockade on the development of EAG using native CTLA4-Ig or mutant CTLA4-Ig (Y100F-Ig), which selectively blocks B7.1. Native CTLA4-Ig treatment ameliorated EAG by several measures, including the levels of circulating anti-GBM antibodies, albuminuria, the deposition of IgG and fibrin in the glomeruli, the severity of glomerular abnormalities, and the numbers of infiltrating T cells and macrophages. Y100F-Ig resulted in a similar reduction in the severity of nephritis, but produced no overall reduction in circulating anti-GBM antibodies, although there was a reduction in IgG2a antibodies. We concluded that CD28-B7 blockade reduced autoantibody production and cellular infiltration of glomeruli, and prevented target organ injury. Our results suggest a key role for B7. 1 in costimulation of Th1-like autoimmune responses in the rat, and show that glomerular injury in EAG is largely dependent on cell-mediated mechanisms.

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