We previously showed that an HLA-DR variant containing arginine at position 74 of the DRβ1 chain (DRβ1 -Arg74) is the specific HLA class II variant conferring risk for autoimmune thyroid diseases (AITD).Wealso identified 5 thyroglobulin (Tg) peptides that bound to DRβ1 -Arg74. We hypothesized that blocking the binding of these peptides to DRβ1 -Arg74 could block the continuous T-cell activation in thyroiditis needed to maintain the autoimmune response to the thyroid. The aim of the current study was to identify small molecules that can block T-cell activation by Tg peptides presented within DRβ1 -Arg74 pockets. We screened a large and diverse library of compounds and identified one compound, cepharanthine that was able to block peptide binding to DRβ1 -Arg74. We then showed that Tg.2098 is the dominant peptide when inducing experimental autoimmune thyroiditis (EAT) in NOD mice expressing human DRβ1 -Arg74. Furthermore, cepharanthine blocked T-cell activation by thyroglobulin peptides, in particular Tg.2098 in mice that were induced with EAT. For the first time we identified a small molecule that can block Tg peptide binding and presentation to T-cells in autoimmune thyroiditis. If confirmed cepharanthine could potentially have a role in treating human AITD.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||12|
|Journal||Journal of Biological Chemistry|
|State||Published - Feb 19 2016|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology