HLA-DR4-associated T and B cell responses to specific determinants on the IA-2 autoantigen in type 1 diabetes.
McLaughlin KA., Gulati K., Richardson CC., Morgan D., Bodansky HJ., Feltbower RG., Christie MR.
Autoantibodies to IA-2 in type 1 diabetes are associated with HLA-DR4, suggesting influences of HLA-DR4-restricted T cells on IA-2-specific B cell responses. The aim of this study was to investigate possible T-B cell collaboration by determining whether autoantibodies to IA-2 epitopes are associated with T cell responses to IA-2 peptides presented by DR4. T cells secreting the cytokines IFN-γ and IL-10 in response to seven peptides known to elicit T cell responses in type 1 diabetes were quantified by cytokine ELISPOT in HLA-typed patients characterized for Abs to IA-2 epitopes. T cell responses were detected to all peptides tested, but only IL-10 responses to 841-860 and 853-872 peptides were associated with DR4. Phenotyping by RT-PCR of FACS-sorted CD45RO(hi) T cells secreting IL-10 in response to these two peptides indicated that these expressed GATA-3 or T-bet, but not FOXP3, consistent with these being Th2 or Th1 memory T cells rather than of regulatory phenotype. T cell responses to the same two peptides were also associated with specific Abs: those to 841-860 peptide with Abs to juxtamembrane epitopes, which appear early in prediabetes, and those to peptide 853-872 with Abs to an epitope located in the 831-862 central region of the IA-2 tyrosine phosphatase domain. Abs to juxtamembrane and central region constructs were both DR4 associated. This study identifies a region of focus for B and T cell responses to IA-2 in HLA-DR4 diabetic patients that may explain HLA associations of IA-2 autoantibodies, and this region may provide a target for future immune intervention to prevent disease.