Cases reported "Graves Disease"

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1/8. Two Graves' disease patients who spontaneously developed hypothyroidism after antithyroid drug treatment: characteristics of epitopes for thyrotropin receptor antibodies.

    Few reports have identified blocking thyrotropin receptor antibodies (TSHRAbs) as a pathogenic mechanism explaining spontaneous hypothyroidism after antithyroid drug (ATD) treatment of Graves' disease. Here we report 2 Graves' patients who showed different courses of hypothyroidism after ATD treatment. The first patient had Graves' hyperthyroidism and was treated with ATD for 1 year. After a short period of euthyroidism, she developed permanent hypothyroidism with blocking TSHRAb. The second patient became euthyroid after 1 year of ATD treatment. After 3 years, however, she presented with hypothyroidism with blocking TSHRAb activity. Her hypothyroidism was transient, and restoration of euthyroidism was followed by disappearance of blocking TSHRAb. Blocking and stimulating TSHRAbs activities of these 2 patients were serially measured using Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells transfected with wild-type human TSHR (CHO-hTSHR) and 2 TSHR chimeras with residues 8-165 (Mc1 2) or 90-165 (Mc2) substituted by equivalent residues of the luteinizing hormone/chorionic gonadotropin receptor (LH/CGR). During their hypothyroid phases, blocking TSHRAbs activities were positive in all 3 kinds of assays and stimulating TSHRAbs activities were negative in CHO-hTSHR or in Mc 1 2 assay. Mc2 stimulating TSHRAb activity was detected in sera of hypothyroid phase of the second patient who had transient hypothyroidism but not in the first whose hypothyroidism was permanent. In these 2 cases, we demonstrate the causative role of blocking TSHRAb in the development of hypothyroidism after ATD treatment in Graves' patients. Interestingly, the difference in the course of blocking TSHRAb-induced hypothyroidism was associated with the difference in epitope reactivities of TRAb during hypothyroid phase that developed after ATD treatment of Graves' disease.
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2/8. Evidence for a simplified view of autoantibody interactions with the thyrotropin receptor.

    Recently, many exceptions have been reported that undermine the concept that the epitopes for thyroid-stimulating autoantibodies (TSAb) and thyrotropin-blocking autoantibodies (TBAb) lie within the N-terminal and C-terminal portions of the thyrotropin receptor (TSHR) ectodomain, respectively. Here we have used a new approach to examine the issue by attempting to neutralize autoantibodies with the purified, N-terminal 289 amino acids of the TSHR ectodomain (TSHR-289), essentially the A subunit. immunoglobulin g (IgG) with TSAb activity from 10 patients with Graves' disease was preincubated with or without purified active or inactive TSHR-289. Active, but not inactive, TSHR-289 completely neutralized TSAb activity in all sera. We then tested the ability of active TSHR-289 to neutralize TBAb activity in two rare hypothyroid patients with pure TBAb activity lacking agonist activity. IgG from both patients was extremely potent in the TBAb assay. Unlike with TSAb, preincubation of the IgG with a large excess of active TSHR-289 (20 microg/mL) revealed a remarkable divergence. TBAb activity from one patient was totally neutralized whereas in the other patient TBAb activity was totally unaffected. In conclusion, using a new approach, we confirm that the major portion of the TSAb epitope in the 418 amino acid ectodomain lies upstream of residue 289 (within the A subunit). In contrast, TBAb that cause hyperthyroidism can be more heterogeneous, with epitopes that lie largely upstream (A subunit) or downstream (B subunit) of residue 289.
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3/8. Establishment and characterization of an antihuman thyrotropin (TSH) receptor-specific CD4 T cell line from a patient with Graves' disease: evidence for multiple T cell epitopes on the TSH receptor including the transmembrane domain.

    From the peripheral lymphocytes of a patient with Graves' disease, we established a T cell line using its reaction to a pool of 49 synthetic peptides corresponding to the entire human thyrotropin receptor (TSHR) sequence. This T cell line showed a specific response to the pool of peptides in a microproliferation assay (stimulation index: 4.8). flow cytometry analysis revealed that the cell surface markers were CD4 CD8-, T cell receptor (TcR) alpha beta , and Tcr gamma delta-. To investigate T cell epitopes on TSHR, the T cell line reacted well against three groups: the N-terminal (amino acids 31-169) and C-terminal (338-420) regions of the extracellular domain and the N-terminal half (441-661) of the transmembrane domain of the receptor. This suggests a multiplicity of T cell epitopes on the TSHR, and was further supported by analysis of TcR gene expression in the cell line that showed the expression of 5 V alpha genes; V alpha-1, 2, 10, 20, and w25. In conclusion, the results of the present study indicated multiple T cell epitopes on the TSHR molecule including the transmembrane domain.
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4/8. Characteristics and clinical correlates of a novel thyroid-stimulating autoantibody.

    We reported a patient who gave birth to 3 children with transient neonatal hypothyroidism. She had 3 different antibodies (Ab) to the thyrotropin receptor (TSHR) in her serum, viz., TSH binding-inhibiting (TBIAb), thyroid-stimulating (TSAb) and an additional stimulating Ab (SAb). The SAb differed from TSAb in that its in vitro stimulating effect in human thyroid and FRTL5 cells was not inhibited by TBIAb [similar data now obtained with Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells transfected with cloned human TSHR]. Because of symptomatic goiter enlargement the patient underwent subtotal thyroidectomy. About 50% of the gland was infiltrated with lymphocytes; thyroid follicles had columnar epithelium, despite suppression of TSH by thyroxine and the presence of the potent TBIAb. Fifteen months later, when all 3 Ab showed a decline of approximately 3 fold, she gave birth to hypothyroid twins. These data support the following conclusions: 1) thyroidectomy and immunosuppression of pregnancy do not prevent neonatal thyroid disease if TSHR Ab (TRAb) are of high titer; 2) the thyroid is not a major site of TRAb production; 3) SAb is a thyroid stimulator, distinct from TSAb in that it does not share binding epitopes on the TSHR with either TSH or TBIAb; 4) SAb was the probable cause of thyroid growth in this patient.
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5/8. Human self-reactive T cell clones expressing identical T cell receptor beta chains differ in their ability to recognize a cryptic self-epitope.

    Recognition of self-antigens by T lymphocytes is a central event in autoimmunity. Understanding of the molecular interactions between T cell receptors (TCR) and self-epitopes may explain how T cells escape thymic education and initiate an autoimmune reaction. We have studied five human in vivo activated T cell clones specific for the region 535-551 of human thyroid peroxidase (TPO) established from a Graves' patient. Three clones (37, 72, and 73) expressed identical TCR beta and alpha chains rearranging V beta 1.1 and V alpha 15.1, and were considered sister clones. Clone 43 differed from clone 37 and its sisters in the J alpha region only. Clone NP-7 expressed V beta 6.5 but rearranged two in-frame TCR alpha chain, both using the V alpha 22.1 segment. Fine epitope mapping using nested peptides showed that clones using identical TCR beta chains, identical V alpha, but a different J alpha recognized distinct, nonoverlapping epitopes in the TPO 535-551 region. This finding shows that a different J alpha region alone leads to a heterogeneous pattern of recognition. This indicates that the "restricted" TCR V region usage sometimes found in autoimmune diseases may not always correspond to identical epitope recognition. To confirm that clones 37 (and its sisters) and 43 recognize different epitopes, the T cell clones were stimulated with a TPO-transfected autologous Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) cell line (TPO-EBV) that presents TPO epitopes afer endogenous processing. Only clone 37 and its sisters recognizes the TPO-EBV cell line, suggesting that the epitope recognized by clone 43 is not presented upon endogenous processing. We have shown that thyroid epithelial cells (TEC), the only cells that produce TPO, express HLA class II molecules in Graves' disease and can act as an antigen-presenting cells, presenting TPO after endogenous processing to autoantigen-reactive T cell clones. We tested, therefore, whether autologous TEC induced the same pattern of stimulation as TPO-EBV; T cell clone 37 recognizes the TEC, whereas it is stimulated poorly by the TPO loaded to autologous peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC). Clone 43, which fails to recognize the TPO-EBV, also fails to recognize the TEC, but is activated by exogenous TPO presented by autologous PBMC. These results show that exogenous versus endogenous processing in vivo generates a different TPO epitope repertoire, producing a "cryptic" epitope (epitope not always available for recognition). Our findings define a route by which human self-reactive T cells may escape thymic selection and become activated in vivo, thus possibly leading to autoimmunity.
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6/8. Human B cells secreting immunoglobulin g to glutamic acid decarboxylase-65 from a nondiabetic patient with multiple autoantibodies and Graves' disease: a comparison with those present in type 1 diabetes.

    Antibodies to glutamic acid decarboxylase-65 (GAD65) are present in a number of autoimmune disorders, such as insulin-dependent (type 1) diabetes mellitus (IDDM), stiff man syndrome, and polyendocrine autoimmune disease. Antibodies to GAD in IDDM patients usually recognize conformation-dependent regions on GAD65 and rarely bind to the second isoform, glutamic acid decarboxylase-67 (GAD67). In contrast, those present in stiff man syndrome and polyendocrine disease commonly target the second isoform (GAD67) and include antibodies that are less dependent on the conformation of the molecule. By immortalizing peripheral blood B cells with Epstein-Barr virus, we have generated three human IgG autoantibodies, termed b35, b78, and b96, to GAD65 from one patient with multiple autoantibodies to endocrine organs and Graves' disease. All three autoantibodies are of the IgG1 isotype, with islet cell activity, and do not react with GAD67. The regions on GAD65 recognized by the three autoantibodies have been investigated by immunoprecipitation with a series of chimeras, by binding to denatured and reduced antigens, and using protein footprinting techniques. Using chimeric GAD proteins, we have shown that b35 targets the IDDM-E1 region of GAD65 (amino acids 240-435) whereas both b78 and b96 target the IDDM-E2 region of GAD65 (amino acids 451-570). Furthermore, examination of binding to recombinant GAD65 and GAD67 by Western blotting revealed some differences in epitope recognition, where only b78 bound denatured and reduced GAD65. However, b35, b78, and b96 autoantibodies had different footprinting patterns after trypsin treatment of immune complexes with GAD65, again indicating different epitope recognition. Our results indicate that antibodies to GAD65 present in nondiabetic patients with multiple autoantibodies to endocrine organs show similarities to those in IDDM (by targeting IDDM-E1 and IDDM-E2 regions of GAD65) as well as subtle differences in epitope recognition (such as binding to denatured and reduced GAD65 and by protein footprinting). Thus, the GAD65 epitopes recognized by autoantibodies in different autoimmune diseases may overlap and be more heterogeneous than previously recognized.
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7/8. Graves' disease following thyrotoxic painless thyroiditis. Analysis of antibody activities against the thyrotropin receptor in two cases.

    The exact immunologic mechanisms that lead to the emergence and progression of painless ("silent") thyroiditis remain unclear. We report two cases of painless postpartum thyroiditis followed by Graves' disease, where extensive immunologic evaluation supported a possible pathogenetic association. The time course of changes in thyroid function tests, 123I thyroidal uptake values, and thyrotropin receptor antibodies (TSHRAbs) were documented. The existence of stimulating TSHRAbs (TSAbs) activating the cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) and phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PIP2) signal cascades and their functional epitopes, as well as two different thyrotropin-binding inhibitory immunoglobulins (TBII) were documented in both patients at the time of diagnosis of Graves' disease. We suggest that susceptible persons may develop an immunologic response that can trigger the appearance of a mixture of species of TSHRAbs, which in turn may lead to the sequential occurrence of painless thyroiditis and Graves' disease. Additionally, the multiple phases of hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism that can occur in these patients may reflect the existence and changing spectrum of TSHRAbs in their sera.
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8/8. thyrotropin receptor epitopes recognized by graves' autoantibodies developing under immunosuppressive therapy.

    Abnormal modulation of the immune system is a prerequisite for the expression of Graves' disease. Thus, when hyperthyroidism developed in a renal transplant recipient under long term immunosuppression with cyclosporine A and prednisone, we carefully evaluated the basis for her hyperthyroidism and her state of immunosuppression. immunosuppression was confirmed by finding markedly deficient lymphocyte responses to common mitogens. Lymphocyte phenotype frequencies were those previously found in Graves', i.e. elevated frequencies of CD3/DR, CD5/26, and CD3/25 lymphocytes. There was also reversal of the CD4/CD8 ratio due to increased CD8 frequency; this is not a typical finding in autoimmune hyperthyroidism, but has been seen in the intrathyroidal lymphocyte populations of some Graves' patients and is associated with other forms of autoimmunity. The patient's serum contained a broad spectrum of TSH receptor autoantibodies (TSHRAbs) characteristic of Graves' disease. To determine whether these were an unusual population of autoantibodies, we determined their functional epitopes before and for nearly 1 yr after radioiodine therapy. Stimulating TSHRAbs that increase cAMP levels were human receptor (TSHR) specific and consistently recognized functional epitopes located on TSHR residues 90-165. Stimulating TSHRAbs that increased arachidonate release and inositol phosphate levels recognized residues 25-90, as did TSH binding inhibitory Igs present in the patient. These data demonstrate that Graves' disease with a wide array of TSHRAbs can develop in a patient despite adequate immunosuppression. More importantly, they show that the cAMP-stimulating TSHRAb associated with disease expression in this patient had a homogeneous subtype dependent on TSHR residues 90-165. As persistence of this type of TSHRAb over time has been associated with resistance to methimazole therapy in Graves' patients, we speculate that the development and persistence of TSHRAb with this homogeneous epitope may be linked to resistance to immunosuppressive therapy.
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