Effects of in vivo administration of anti-B7-1/B7-2 monoclonal antibodies on the survival of mice with chronic ongoing myocarditis caused by Coxsackievirus B3

Y Seko, N Takahashi, H Yagita, K Okumura, M Azuma, Y Yazaki
Journal of Pathology 1999, 188 (1): 107-12
In acute myocarditis and dilated cardiomyopathy, it has previously been reported that antigen-specific T-cells infiltrate the heart and play an important role in the myocardial damage involved. For antigen-specific T-cell activation to occur, it is necessary for the T-cell to receive co-stimulatory signals provided by co-stimulatory molecules expressed on the antigen-presenting cell (APC), as well as the main signal provided by binding of the T-cell receptor (TCR) to the antigen. To investigate the roles for the co-stimulatory molecules B7-1 and B7-2 in the development of chronic ongoing viral myocarditis, firstly the expression of B7-1/B7-2 was analysed in the hearts of A/J mice with myocarditis induced by Coxsackievirus B3 (CVB3). Secondly the induction of B7-1/B7-2 on cultured cardiac myocytes treated with interferon (IFN)-gamma was evaluated. Thirdly the effects of the in vivo administration of anti-B7-1/B7-2 monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) on the survival of mice with viral myocarditis were examined. CVB3-induced myocarditis resulted in enhanced expression of B7-1/B7-2 on cardiac myocytes. The expression of B7-1/B7-2 on cardiac myocytes could be induced by IFN-gamma in vitro. In vivo anti-B7-1 MAb treatment significantly prolonged the survival of mice with myocarditis, whereas anti-B7-2 MAb treatment abrogated the protective effect of anti-B7-1. These findings indicate that distinct roles for B7-1 and B7-2 antigens are involved in the development of viral myocarditis and raise the possibility of immunotherapy with anti-B7-1 MAb to prevent T-cell-mediated cardiac myocyte injury and to improve the prognosis of viral myocarditis.

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