Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Neurology. 2013 Aug 27;81(9):784-92. doi: 10.1212/WNL.0b013e3182a2ce0e. Epub 2013 Aug 2.

T-cell homeostasis in pediatric multiple sclerosis: old cells in young patients.

Author information

1
Division of Molecular Neuroimmunology, Department of Neurology, DZL Junior Group "Airway Inflammation," Translational Lung Research Center, University Hospital Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Germany.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To assess pediatric patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) for early signs of homeostatic and functional abnormalities in conventional (Tcon) and regulatory T cells (Treg).

METHODS:

We studied the composition of the peripheral T-cell compartment and Treg function in a cross-sectional study with 30 pediatric MS (pMS) patients by multicolor flow cytometry and proliferation assays. Data were compared to those obtained from adult patients (n = 26) and age-matched control donors (n = 67).

RESULTS:

Proportions of naive T cells were 10%-20% higher in children than in adults, reflecting the age-related decline. pMS patients, however, had clearly lower numbers of naive T cells, among them recent thymic emigrants (RTE), whereas percentages of memory T cells were increased. In the Treg compartment, reduced RTE numbers coincided with markedly dampened suppressive capacities of total Treg. These homeostatic changes in circulating T cells precisely paralleled the pattern seen in adult MS. As in adults, treatment with immunomodulatory drugs attenuated these alterations.

CONCLUSION:

The homeostatic changes detected in the T-cell compartment in pMS are similar to those in adult-onset disease. With ratios between naive and memory T-cell subsets matching those of 20- to 30-years-older controls, signs of early thymic involution are already found in pMS, suggesting that an intrinsic compromise in thymic-dependent T-cell neogenesis might contribute to MS pathogenesis.

PMID:
23911752
DOI:
10.1212/WNL.0b013e3182a2ce0e
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire
Loading ...
Support Center