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June 1987

S-Antigen: Adoptive Transfer of Experimental Autoimmune Uveitis Following Immunization With a Small Synthetic Peptide

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Thomas Jefferson University (Dr Merryman, Ms Sciutto, and Mr Bauer), the Retina Service, Wills Eye Hospital (Drs Donoso and Sery), Philadelphia; and the Laboratory for Molecular and Developmental Biology, National Eye Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Md (Dr Shinohara).

Arch Ophthalmol. 1987;105(6):841-843. doi:10.1001/archopht.1987.01060060127047

• Experimental autoimmune uveitis was observed following the adoptive transfer of T cell lymphocytes (T cells) from Lewis rats previously immunized with a small synthetic peptide, peptide M, which corresponds to the amino acid sequence of a well-defined region of Santigen. Prior to adoptive transfer, the T cells were restimulated in tissue culture with peptide M. Approximately five days following the intravenous administration of restimulated T cells, a severe uveitis was documented both clinically and histopathologically. Clinically, the disease was characterized by iris hyperemia followed by anterior chamber exudates and posterior iris synechiae. Histopathologically, the photoreceptor cell layer of the retina was completely destroyed. A subretinal exudate containing mononuclear cells and polymorphonuclear leukocytes was also present. In addition, the pineal glands of animals with experimental autoimmune uveitis showed inflammatory changes characterized by a lymphocytic infiltration of the subcapsular and central region of the gland. The clinical and histopathologic features of the experimental autoimmune uveitis were similar to those that develop following the adoptive transfer of T cells from Lewis rats previously immunized with S-antigen. Our results indicate that the amino acid sequence of the region of S-antigen corresponding to peptide M represents a distinct pathogenic site with the ability to adoptively transfer disease. We comment on the significance of this finding with regard to T cell-mediated immune mechanisms in certain forms of human uveitis.

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