Use of Toll-Like Receptor Agonists to Induce Ectopic Lymphoid Structures in Myasthenia Gravis Mouse Models

Abstract : Myasthenia gravis (MG) is an autoimmune disease mediated by autoantibodies against the acetylcholine receptor (AChR) at the neuromuscular junction. MG symptoms are characterized by muscle weaknesses. The thymus of MG patients is very often abnormal and possesses all the characteristics of tertiary lymphoid organs such as neoangio-genesis processes, overexpression of inflammatory cytokines and chemokines, and infiltration of B lymphocytes leading to ectopic germinal center (GC) development. We previously demonstrated that injections of mice with polyinosinic–polycytidylic acid [Poly(I:C)], a synthetic double-stranded RNA mimicking viral infection, induce thymic changes and trigger MG symptoms. Upon Poly(I:C) injections, we observed increased thymic expressions of α-AChR, interferon-β and chemokines such as CXCL13 and CCL21 leading to B-cell recruitment. However, these changes were only transient. In order to develop an experimental MG model associated with thymic GCs, we used Poly(I:C) in the classical experimental autoimmune MG model induced by immunizations with purified AChR emulsified in complete Freund's adjuvant. We observed that Poly(I:C) strongly favored the development of MG as almost all mice displayed MG symptoms. Nevertheless, we did not observe any ectopic GC development. We next challenged mice with Poly(I:C) together with other toll-like receptor (TLR) agonists known to be involved in GC development and that are overexpressed in MG thymuses. Imiquimod and CpG oligodeoxynucleotides that activate TLR7 and TLR9, respectively, did not induce thymic changes. In contrast, lipopolysaccharide that activates TLR4 potentiated Poly(I:C) effects and induced a significant expression of CXCL13 mRNA in the thymus associated with a higher recruitment of B cells that induced over time thymic B-lymphoid structures. Altogether, these data suggest that tertiary lymphoid genesis in MG thymus could result from a combined activation of TLR signaling pathways.
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Frontiers in Immunology, Frontiers, 2017, 8, pp.1029. 〈10.3389/fimmu.2017.01029〉
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Soumis le : lundi 11 septembre 2017 - 11:04:29
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Marieke Robinet, Bérengère Villeret, Solène Maillard, Mélanie A. Cron, Sonia Berrih-Aknin, et al.. Use of Toll-Like Receptor Agonists to Induce Ectopic Lymphoid Structures in Myasthenia Gravis Mouse Models. Frontiers in Immunology, Frontiers, 2017, 8, pp.1029. 〈10.3389/fimmu.2017.01029〉. 〈hal-01585119〉



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