Our previous study showed that T cells in skin lesions of human atopic dermatitis (AD) had oligoclonal accumulation, indicating the involvement of antigen-specific immune reactions at those sites. Recently, NC/Nga mice, which develop skin lesions similar to AD, have been proposed as a model for that disease.
To clarify whether NC/Nga mice are suitable as a model for human AD from the viewpoint of their antigen-specific immune responses.
Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and single strand conformation polymorphism (SSCP) analyses were conducted to detect TCR BV genes of clonally expanded T cells derived from NC/Nga mice at an early phase of the AD-like dermatitis, at a late phase of the dermatitis, and with no AD-like dermatitis.
(1) T cells with TCR BV 7, 10 and 17 reside in the skin of NC/Nga mice without the AD-like dermatitis. (2) T cells with these BV genes contain oligoclonal accumulations, however, expanded T cell clonotypes are also detected in the spleen and exist constantly during the course of the AD-like dermatitis. (3) Development of the AD-like dermatitis is associated with additional oligoclonal expansion/accumulation of T cells with TCR BV 2, 4 and 6 genes. (4) Progression of the AD-like dermatitis is associated with further oligoclonal expansion/accumulation of T cells with the TCR BV 14 gene. (5) Some of the expanded TCR clonotypes are common between the individual mice and between early and late phases.
Taking these data together with the previous human AD studies, NC/Nga mice seem to be an appropriate model for human AD.
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Accepted: November 25, 2004
Received in revised form: November 18, 2004
Received: August 10, 2004
© 2004 Japanese Society for Investigative Dermatology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.