Tolerance induction by bone marrow transplantation in a multiple sclerosis model

Martin M. Herrmann, Susanne Gaertner, Christine Stadelmann, Jens Van Den Brandt, Robert Böscke, Wilfried Budach, Holger M. Reichardt, Robert Weissert*

*Corresponding author for this work
59 Citations (Scopus)


Experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) in rats is a highly valuable model of multiple sclerosis (MS) because it mimics major hallmarks of the human disease. EAE induced with myelin-oligodendrocyte-glycoprotein (MOG) in DA rats is relapsing/remitting, and lesions in the central nervous system show inflammation, demyelination, and axonal and neuronal loss. Recently, bone marrow transplantation (BMT) was introduced as a novel strategy to treat MS, but its efficiency and the underlying mechanism are debatable. In MOG-induced EAE we found that BMT at the peak of EAE but not in the chronic phase leads to disease attenuation. In both settings, rats receiving bone marrow (BM) transplants were protected from subsequently induced relapses. These findings could be confirmed by histopathology in which rats receiving BM transplants did not have lesions compared with controls not receiving transplants. Importantly, the protective effect was achieved by allogeneic, syngeneic, and BM grafts from diseased rats. BMT resulted in increased numbers of CD4+CD25bright regulatory T cells, increased Foxp3 expression, a shift in T-cell epitope recognition, and a strong reduction of autoantibodies even after rechallenge with MOG. Thus, our results indicate potential mechanisms of how BMT may contribute to the improvement of MS and provide a rationale for its application in patients suffering from various autoimmune diseases.

Original languageEnglish
Issue number5
Pages (from-to)1875-1883
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 01.09.2005


Dive into the research topics of 'Tolerance induction by bone marrow transplantation in a multiple sclerosis model'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this