Genetic susceptibility to multiple sclerosis in Sardinians: an immunological study

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Abstract

Objectives

We studied the in vitro production of variably MS-related cytokines from Sardinian MS and healthy donors bearing the two "Sardinian" MS-associated HLA-DR alleles: DR3 and DR4, with the purpose to evidentiate possible differences in their immune response.

Materials and methods

ELISA were used for detection of cellular products by mitogen-activated peripheral blood mononuclear cells.

Results

PHA-activated HLA-DR4+/DR3− mononuclear cells produce significantly higher amounts of TNF-α compared with the DR3+/DR4−. In addition, homozygous HLA-DR3+ mononuclear cells from MS patients produce significantly lower amounts of IL-10 than those from homozygous HLA-DR3+ healthy donors.

Conclusion

The abnormal production of detrimental or regulatory cytokines may account for the genetic susceptibility to MS in different HLA-subgroups of Sardinian MS patients.

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