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The contribution of autoimmune responses to the pathogenesis of Theiler's virus-induced demyelinating disease was investigated. Delayed-type hypersensitivity responses to myelin were examined in both symptomatic and asymptomatic mice at different times post-infection, in order to determine whether autoreactivity correlates with the development of demyelination. The results indicate that although autoimmune responses probably do not play a major role in the initiation of demyelination at early times post-infection, autoreactivity to myelin antigens dose eventually develop in symptomatic animals, perhaps through the mechanism of epitope spreading. Autoimmunity to myelin components is therefore an additional factor that may contribute to lesion progression in chronically diseased animals.

Type

Journal article

Journal

Immunology

Publication Date

04/1998

Volume

93

Pages

478 - 484

Keywords

Animals, Autoimmunity, Chronic Disease, Demyelinating Diseases, Disease Susceptibility, Female, Hypersensitivity, Delayed, Mice, Mice, Inbred CBA, Mice, Inbred Strains, Myelin Sheath, Poliomyelitis, Species Specificity, Spinal Cord, Theilovirus, Time Factors