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Neuhaus, O; Wiesmüller, KH; Hartung, HP; Wiendl, H.
Prominent T-Cell Responses against the Acetylcholine Receptor ε Subunit in Myasthenia Gravis.
Neurol Res Int. 2019; 2019(4):1969068-1969068 [OPEN ACCESS]
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The human acetylcholine receptor (AChR) is well characterized as the target antigen in myasthenia gravis (MG). Pathogenic antibody responses against the AChR alpha-chain have been investigated extensively and are of diagnostic and prognostic value. However, less is known on the pathogenetic relevance of T-cell responses against epitopes of the different AChR chains (alpha, epsilon, gamma). Using an enzyme-linked immunospot (ELISPOT) assay we measured T-cell responses against recombinant fragments and synthetic peptides of the α and the ε subunits of the human AChR in MG patients (n=15) and in healthy donors (HD; n=9). In MG, highest T-cell responses were noted against recombinantly expressed Epsilon 1-221. Among the synthetic peptides Epsilon 201-215 showed the most prominent T-cell response and represented the peptide with the most remarkable difference between MG and HD. Taken together, prominent T-cell responses against the ε subunit of the human AChR indicate an important role in the pathogenesis of MG.

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