Adoptive transfer of autoimmune diabetes and thyroiditis to athymic rats

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Medicine, Division of Diabetes; Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism

Publication Date


Document Type



Animals; Autoimmune Diseases; Diabetes Mellitus, Experimental; *Immunotherapy, Adoptive; Lymph Nodes; Lymphocyte Activation; Rats; Rats, Inbred BB; Rats, Inbred Strains; Spleen; Thyroiditis, Autoimmune


Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences


We describe the induction of autoimmune diabetes, insulitis, and thyroiditis in athymic rats following injections of major histocompatibility complex compatible spleen cells. Lymphocytes with these capabilities were found in normal rats of the YOS, WAG, PVG, and diabetes-resistant BB strains, and in diabetes-prone BB rats. Adoptive transfer was facilitated by prior in vivo depletion of RT6.1+ regulatory T cells and in vitro mitogen activation of donor spleen cells. By RT6 depleting diabetes-resistant donors and using nude recipients, transfer of diabetes and thyroiditis was accomplished by using fresh, unstimulated spleen cells. The data suggest that organ-specific autoreactive cells may be present to various degrees but suppressed to a variable extent in many rat strains. The equilibrium between autoreactive and regulatory cells appears to determine the expression of autoimmunity.


Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1990 Oct;87(19):7618-22.

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America

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Link to Article in PubMed

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