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Arthritis Rheum. 1997 May;40(5):945-54.

Recognition of chlamydial antigen by HLA-B27-restricted cytotoxic T cells in HLA-B*2705 transgenic CBA (H-2k) mice.

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Universitätsklinikum Benjamin Franklin, and Deutsches Rheuma-Forschungszentrum, Berlin, Germany.



The association of reactive arthritis (ReA) with HLA-B27 and the presence of bacterial antigen in joints with ReA suggest that bacterial peptides might be presented by the HLA-B27 molecule and thus stimulate CD8 T cells. This study was performed to investigate the B27-restricted cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) response to Chlamydia trachomatis, using the model of HLA-B27 transgenic mice.


CBA (H-2k) mice homozygous for HLA-B*2705 and human beta2-microglobulin expression were immunized with C trachomatis or with the chlamydial 57-kd heat-shock protein (hsp57) coupled to latex beads. Cytotoxicity of lymphocytes from in vivo-primed transgenic mice was tested against C trachomatis-infected targets. Blocking experiments were performed with monoclonal antibodies (MAb) against class I major histocompatibility complex molecules.


A Chlamydia-specific lysis of both B27-transfected and nontransfected target cells was observed. This response could be inhibited by anti-B27 and anti-H2 MAb. CTL from mice immunized with hsp57 were not able to lyse Chlamydia-infected target cells, and Chlamydia-specific CTL could not destroy targets loaded with hsp57.


These results suggest the existence of at least 2 CTL populations in this mouse model: one recognizing peptide of bacteria-infected cells restricted by HLA-B*2705 and the other recognizing peptide of bacteria-infected cells restricted by the murine H-2Kk molecule. It does not appear that hsp57 is a major target for the CD8 T cell response directed against Chlamydia. This animal model opens the way for identifying bacterial epitopes presented by HLA-B27, and might thus help to clarify the pathogenesis of B27-associated diseases.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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