Researchers from Dana-Farber Cancer Institute have successfully blocked the development of rheumatoid arthritis in a mouse model. According to study results published February 8, 2013 in the Journal of Clinical Investigation, the infusion of CD8+ Treg cells (T regulatory cells) into arthritis-prone mice shut down the inflammatory cascade.
The infusions were most effective when given at the same time as a protein that triggered the autoimmune reaction which caused arthritis. But, even when CD8+ Treg was given weeks after arthritis had begun to develop, along with low doses of methotrexate, arthritis progression slowed. More studies are needed but researchers are hopeful this will lead to a new strategy for treating rheumatoid arthritis.
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