Induction of transient arthritis by the adoptive transfer of a collagen II specific Th1 clone to HLA-DR4 (B1*0401) transgenic mice
Journal of Autoimmunity
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Collagen II arthritis (CIA) represents an animal model of human RA that can be induced in DBA/1J (H-2q) but not in C57BL/6 mice (H-2b). A vigorous CII specific CD4 Th1-cell response but not IgG2 anti-CII antibody or CIA could be induced in C57BL/6 mice made transgenic for the RA shared epitope DR4 (B1*0401). We developed CD4 Th1-cell clones specific for CII from these transgenic (tg) mice in order to determine if the adoptive transfer of these clones into syngeneic tg C57BL/6 recipients could induce CIA. Three bovine CII specific (bCII) CD4 Th1-cell clones and one T-cell line specific for an immunodominant region of bCII (p261-273) were generated. Among these only one clone that could up-regulate anti-CII, IgG2 antibody in the recipient mice was able to induce transient arthritis. However, this level of IgG2 anti-CII antibody was only one-third of that seen in CII immunized DBA/1J mice that develop persistent arthritis. These results confirm our previous observations that the induction of CIA requires a sustained IgG2 antibody response to CII, an effect difficult to achieve even in DR4 (B1*0401) tg mice reconstituted with CD4 Th1 cells. This suggests that a rate limiting step in the development of human RA among those individuals expressing the RA shared epitope may be the requirement to generate sustained levels of complement fixing antibody to arthritogenic antigens. © 2002 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.