Relationship between disease duration and predominant orbital T cell subset in Graves' ophthalmopathy

J. P. Aniszewski, R. W. Valyasevi, R. S. Bahn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

125 Scopus citations


We sought to determine whether the predominant orbital T helper (TH) cell subset in orbital T cell clones established from patients with Graves' ophthalmopathy (GO) might be related to disease duration. A total of 117 clones were established from orbital adipose/connective tissues of 6 GO patients, and cytokine production was measured in 57 CD3+CD4+ clones. TH1-type clones were predominant in cultures from patients with recent onset (<2 yr) Graves' hyperthyroidism (n = 44; TH1/TH0/TH2 = 57/29/14%) or GO (n = 53 clones; TH1/TH0/TH2 = 47/30/23%). In contrast, TH2-type clones predominated in cultures from patients with more remote onset (>2 yr) hyperthyroidism (n = 13; TH1/TH0/TH2 = 0/31/69%;P < 0.005) or GO (n = 4; TH1/TH0/TH2 = 0/25/75%; P = 0.05). In addition, we established T cell clones from 1 TH1-dominant patient with recent-onset thyroid and eye disease using either IL-2 (12.5 ng/mL) alone or IL-2 plus IL-4 (5 ng/mL) and found no shift toward recovery of TH2-type clones in the latter. In conclusion, although the CD3+CD4+ clones characterized were not necessarily tissue antigen specific, our findings suggest that cell-mediated (TH1-type) immune reactions may predominate in the orbit in early GO, whereas humoral immunity (TH2-type) might play the greater role in later stages of the disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)776-780
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Biochemistry
  • Endocrinology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biochemistry, medical


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