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J Neuroimmunol. 1997 Nov;79(2):185-9.

Oligoclonal expansion of muscle infiltrating T cells in inclusion body myositis.

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Department of Pathology, Sahlgrenska Hospital, Gothenburg University, Sweden.


Inclusion body myositis (IBM) is the most common muscle disease affecting individuals over 50 years of age. An important feature of IBM is invasion of muscle fibers by T cells. The muscle infiltrating T cells show a restricted usage of variable (V) alpha/beta gene families. In this study we have investigated the clonality of T cells using two of the predominant V beta families i.e. V beta 3 and V beta 8 in three patients with IBM. The study was performed by reverse transcription and polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) analysis, followed by cloning and sequencing of the T cell receptor complementarity determining region 3. We found oligoclonal expansion of V beta 3 bearing muscle infiltrating T cells in two patients and of V beta 8 in one patient, supporting the concept that antigen stimulated T cells are important in the pathogenesis of IBM. Results of HLA typing indicated a genetic predisposition for the disease by the presence of DR3, DR52 and DQB1*0201/0202 in all three patients.

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