T cells infiltrating the iris/ciliary body of Lewis rats with anterior uveitis (AU) that had been induced by myelin basic protein (MBP) immunization were previously found to share surface markers common to the T cells that cause experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). To determine whether these AU-associated T cells are in fact the same as those that infiltrate the central nervous system to cause EAE, we examined TCR V gene expression in T cells infiltrating the anterior chamber in rats with AU. As with EAE, we found a biased expression of Vβ8.2 and Vα2 in the iris/ciliary body and, although one would expect an influx of nonspecific inflammatory T cells, these biases were still evident at the peak of AU. An analysis of the TCR Vβ8.2 and Vα2 sequences derived from the iris/ciliary body demonstrated the presence of the same complementarity determining region 3 motifs found in MBP-specific T cells that are pathogenic for EAE and found in T cells derived from the central nervous system of rats with EAE. Finally, T cells isolated from the iris/ciliary body of rats with AU were found to proliferate in a specific fashion to MBP Ags. Thus, it appears that MBP-specific T cells are pathogenic for AU as well as EAE in the Lewis rat. In addition, the long- term presence of this highly restricted MBP response in the iris/ciliary body indicates that distinct immunoregulatory mechanisms exist in the environment of the eye. This provides an interesting model with which to address questions pertaining to the nature of T cells infiltrating the eye and their regulation during EAE and other systemic diseases.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Journal of Immunology|
|State||Published - Aug 15 1998|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy