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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

A BAFF antagonist suppresses experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis by targeting cell-mediated and humoral immune responses.

BAFF [ B cell-activating factor of the tumour necrosis factor (TNF) family] and APRIL (a proliferation- inducing ligand) are two TNF family members with shared receptors. While, physiological roles for APRIL are not fully understood, BAFF is critical for B cell homeostasis and also acts as a co-stimulator of T cells. Using a B and T cell-mediated mouse model of multiple sclerosis (MS), myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein (MOG)-induced experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), we observed that a BAFF/ APRIL antagonist (soluble BCMA-Fc) inhibited central nervous system inflammation and demyelination such that it suppressed the onset and progression of clinical symptoms of EAE. In addition to dramatically reducing the titre of MOG-specific auto-antibodies, this treatment also induced a switch in the subtype of the T(h) cell population characterized by marked alterations in cytokine production following re-stimulation with MOG in vitro. Indeed, hBCMA-Fc therapy led to significant increases in the level of transforming growth factor beta, while the levels of T(h)1 cytokines were markedly diminished. These results not only identify BAFF as a critical factor in maintaining humoral immunity in EAE but also support its role in T lymphocyte responses. Our findings demonstrate that hBCMA-Fc acts on both effector arms of the immune response in EAE, a characteristic that may be of significant therapeutic value in the treatment of MS.[1]


  1. A BAFF antagonist suppresses experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis by targeting cell-mediated and humoral immune responses. Huntington, N.D., Tomioka, R., Clavarino, C., Chow, A.M., Liñares, D., Maña, P., Rossjohn, J., Cachero, T.G., Qian, F., Kalled, S.L., Bernard, C.C., Reid, H.H. Int. Immunol. (2006) [Pubmed]
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