home   genetic news   bioinformatics   biotechnology   literature   journals   ethics   positions   events   sitemap
  HUM-MOLGEN -> Genetic News | search  

NK Cells, But Not NKT Cells, Are Essential For Myasthenia Gravis Development

  September, 1 2000 3:03
your information resource in human molecular genetics
Natural killer cells and autoimmunity

Nature Immunology, pages 245-251.

Autoimmune diseases such as arthritis and myasthenia gravis are inflammatory disorders in which cells of the immune system attack the body’s own organs. The causes of autoimmune diseases are still unknown, but some theories postulate that they may be induced by an external trigger such as a viral infection.

Natural killer cells are the first line of defense in fighting infections and therefore could be involved in the initiation of autoimmune diseases. Natural killer cells come in two varieties, NK and NKT cells, but their precise role in the development of autoimmunity is unclear.

In the September issue of Nature Immunology [Vol. 1, No. 3], researchers from the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, used a mouse model of the autoimmune disease myasthenia gravis (in which the connections between nerves and muscles are attacked) to study the role played by NK and NKT cells. Myasthenia gravis is a well characterized autoimmune disease: CD4+ T cells help B cells to produce autoantibodies.

Ljünggren et al. show that NK cells, but not NKT cells, are required for the initial development of myasthenia gravis. Mice that had no NK cells, but not those that lacked NKT cells, did not activate T cells, so no B cells were instructed to make autoreactive antibodies. These data reveal a link between NK cells and autoreactive T and B cells that attack the host’s own body.

Contact Information:

Hans-Gustaf Ljunggren
Karolinska Institute
Microbiology and Tumor Biology Center
Stockholm S-171 77 SWEDEN
Tel: 46-8-728-63-00
Fax: 46-8-33-07-44
E-mail: hans-gustaf.ljunggren@mtc.ki.se

(C) Nature Immunology press release.

Message posted by: Trevor M. D'Souza

print this article mail this article
Latest News
Variants Associated with Pediatric Allergic Disorder

Mutations in PHF6 Found in T-Cell Leukemia

Genetic Risk Variant for Urinary Bladder Cancer

Antibody Has Therapeutic Effect on Mice with ALS

Regulating P53 Activity in Cancer Cells

Anti-RNA Therapy Counters Breast Cancer Spread

Mitochondrial DNA Diversity

The Power of RNA Sequencing

‘Pro-Ageing' Therapy for Cancer?

Niche Genetics Influence Leukaemia

Molecular Biology: Clinical Promise for RNA Interference

Chemoprevention Cocktail for Colon Cancer

more news ...

Generated by News Editor 2.0 by Kai Garlipp
WWW: Kai Garlipp, Frank S. Zollmann.
7.0 © 1995-2023 HUM-MOLGEN. All rights reserved. Liability, Copyright and Imprint.