A peptide composed of tandem analogs of two myasthenogenic T cell epitopes interferes with specific autoimmune responses

Yael Katz-Levy, Miri Paas-Rozner, Susan Kirshner, Molly Dayan, Einat Zisman, Mati Fridkin, Itzhak Wirguin, Michael Sela, Edna Mozes

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    31 Scopus citations


    Myasthenia gravis (MG) is a T cell-regulated, antibody-mediated autoimmune disease. Two peptides representing sequences of the human acetylcholine receptor α-subunit, p195-212 and p259-271, were previously shown to stimulate peripheral blond lymphocytes of patients with MG and were found to be immunodominant T cell epitopes in SJL and BALB/c mice, respectively. Single amino acid substituted analogs of p195-212 (analog Ala- 207) and p259-271 (analog Lys-262) were synthesized. We showed that analogs Ala-207 and Lys-262 inhibited, in vitro and in vivo, the proliferative responses of T cell lines specific to the relevant peptide and lymph node cells of mice immunized to p195-212 and p259-271, respectively. To inhibit T cell responses to both peptides (p195-212 and p259-271), we synthesized dual analogs composed of the tandemly arranged two single (Ala-207 and Lys-262) analogs (dual analog) either sequentially (Ala-207-Lys-262) or reciprocally (Lys-262-Ala-207). In the present study, we report that both dual analogs could bind to major histocompatibility complex class II molecules on antigen- presenting cells of SJL and BALB/c mice. Analog Lys-262-Ala-207, which bound more efficiently to major histocompatibility complex class II molecules, was found to inhibit the proliferative responses of both p195-212- and p259-271- specific T cell lines. Furthermore, the analog inhibited the in vivo priming of lymph node cells of both SJL and BALB/c mice when administered i.v., i.p., or per os. The dual analog Lys-262-Ala-207 could also immunomodulate myasthenogenic manifestations in mice with experimental autoimmune MG induced by inoculation of a pathogenic T cell line. Thus, a single peptide that is composed of analogs to two epitope specificities can be used to regulate T cell responses and disease associated with each epitope.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)3200-3205
    Number of pages6
    JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
    Issue number7
    StatePublished - 1 Apr 1997


    • T cell activation
    • altered peptide ligand
    • binding to major histocompatibility complex class II
    • experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis
    • immunotherapy

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • General


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