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Brain Pathol. 2012 Sep;22(5):709-22. doi: 10.1111/j.1750-3639.2012.00577.x. Epub 2012 Mar 21.

Kallikrein 6 regulates early CNS demyelination in a viral model of multiple sclerosis.

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Neurobiology of Disease Program, Mayo Medical and Graduate School, Rochester, MN, USA.


Kallikrein 6 (Klk6) is a secreted serine protease that is elevated in active multiple sclerosis lesions and patient sera. To further evaluate the involvement of Klk6 in chronic progressive demyelinating disease, we determined its expression in the brain and spinal cord of SJL mice infected with Theiler's murine encephalomyelitis virus (TMEV) and assessed the effects of Klk6-neutralizing antibodies on disease progression. Klk6 RNA expression was elevated in the brain and spinal cord by 7 days postinfection (dpi). Thereafter, Klk6 expression persisted primarily in the spinal cord reaching a peak of fivefold over controls at mid-chronic stages (60 dpi-120 dpi). Significant elevations in Klk6 RNA were also induced in splenocytes stimulated with viral capsid proteins in vitro and in activated human acute monocytic leukemia cells. Klk6-neutralizing antibodies reduced TMEV-driven brain and spinal cord pathology and delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH) responses when examined at early chronic time points (40 dpi). Reductions in spinal cord pathology included a decrease in activated monocytes/microglia and reductions in the loss of myelin basic protein (MBP). By 180 dpi, pathology scores no longer differed between groups. These findings point to regulatory activities for Klk6 in the development and progression of central nervous system (CNS) inflammation and demyelination that can be effectively targeted through the early chronic stages with neutralizing antibody.

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