Date of this Version
J Neuroimmunol. 2013 March 15; 256(0): 19–27. doi:10.1016/j.jneuroim.2012.12.004
In this report, we have addressed the role of copper–zinc superoxide dismutase (SOD1) deficiency in the mediation of central nervous system autoimmunity. We demonstrate that SOD1-deficient C57Bl/6 mice develop more severe autoimmune encephalomyelitis induced with myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein (MOG) 35–55, compared with wild type mice. This alteration in the disease phenotype was not due to aberrant expansion of MOG-specific T cells nor their ability to produce inflammatory cytokines; rather lymphocytes generated in SOD1-deficient mice were more prone to spontaneous cell death when compared with their wild type littermate controls. The data point to a role for SOD1 in the maintenance of self-tolerance leading to the suppression of autoimmune responses.