Recombinant myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein quality modifies evolution of experimental autoimmune encephalitis in macaques

Lev Stimmer*, Joachim Confais, Anke‘t Jong, Jennifer Veth, Claire-Maëlle Fovet, Philippe Horellou, Julie Massonneau, Audrey Perrin, Guylaine Miotello, Emilie Avazeri, Bertt Hart, Kumaran Deiva, Roger le Grand, Jean Armengaud, Jeffrey J. Bajramovic, Hugues Contamin, Ché Serguera

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Experimental autoimmune encephalitis (EAE) is a well-recognized model for the study of human acquired demyelinating diseases (ADD), a group of inflammatory disorders of the central nervous system (CNS) characterized by inflammation, myelin loss, and neurological impairment of variable severity. In rodents, EAE is typically induced by active immunization with a combination of myelin-derived antigen and a strong adjuvant as complete Freund’s adjuvant (CFA), containing components of the mycobacterial wall, while myelin antigen alone or associated with other bacterial components, as lipopolysaccharides (LPS), often fails to induce EAE. In contrast to this, EAE can be efficiently induced in non-human primates by immunization with the recombinant human myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein (rhMOG), produced in Escherichia coli (E. coli), purified and formulated with incomplete Freund’s adjuvant (IFA), which lacks bacterial elements. Here, we provide evidence indicating how trace amounts of bacterial contaminants within rhMOG may influence the course and severity of EAE in the cynomolgus macaque immunized with rhMOG/IFA. The residual amount of E. coli contaminants, as detected with mass spectrometry within rhMOG protein stocks, were found to significantly modulate the severity of clinical, radiological, and histologic hallmarks of EAE in macaques. Indeed, animals receiving the purest rhMOG showed milder disease severity, increased numbers of remissions, and reduced brain damage. Histologically, these animals presented a wider diversity of lesion types, including changes in normal-appearing white matter and prephagocytic lesions. Non-human primates EAE model with milder histologic lesions reflect more accurately ADD and permits to study of the pathogenesis of disease initiation and progression.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1513-1522
Number of pages10
JournalLaboratory Investigation
Issue number11
Early online date2021
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2021
Externally publishedYes

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