B-cell responses to myelin basic protein and its epitopes in autoimmune encephalomyelitis induced by Semple rabies vaccine

Sucheep Piyasirisilp, Thiravat Hemachudha, Diane E. Griffin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Semple rabies vaccine is composed of rabies virus-infected sheep or goat brain inactivated with phenol and is administered daily after exposure for 14-21 days. Semple rabies vaccine-induced autoimmune encephalomyelitis (SAE) has clinico-pathological findings of demyelination similar to experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) caused by injection of central nervous system tissue or purified myelin proteins into experimental animals and frequently studied as a model for the human demyelinating disease, multiple sclerosis (MS). T-cell-mediated immune responses play a major role in induction of EAE, and antibody responses enhance disease severity. We studied the antibody responses to myelin basic protein (MBP) in 24 Thai patients with SAE and 77 control individuals to define the linear epitopes in human MBP that are encephalitogenic. Antibody levels were assessed by ELISA using native human MBP or synthetic MBP peptides of 20 amino acids. The major B-cell epitope was MBP61-80 and a minor epitope was MBP106-140 in SAE while in MS the major B-cell epitope is MBP84-96. MBP61-80-specific IgG1 and IgG3 levels were significantly higher in patients than controls while IgG2 and IgG4 were not. The data support the hypothesis that autoreactive Th1 cells induce SAE. The difference in B-cell epitope recognition may be due to differences in the genetic backgrounds of the populations studied or may reflect underlying differences in the pathogenesis of SAE and MS. Copyright (C) 1999 Elsevier Science B.V.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)96-104
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Neuroimmunology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 3 1999


  • Encephalomyelitis, acute disseminated
  • Epitopes, B-lymphocyte
  • Immunoglobulin class switching
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Myelin basic proteins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology

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