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No Evidence for Presence of Mucosal-Associated Invariant T Cells in the Insulitic Lesions in Patients Recently Diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes

Journal article
Authors E. Kuric
L. Krogvold
K. F. Hanssen
K. Dahl-Jorgensen
O. Skog
Olle Korsgren
Published in American Journal of Pathology
Volume 188
Issue 8
Pages 1744-1748
ISSN 0002-9440
Publication year 2018
Published at Institute of Biomedicine
Pages 1744-1748
Language en
Keywords mait cells, multiple-sclerosis, adult patients, onset, Pathology
Subject categories Internal medicine


Mucosal-associated invariant T (MAIT) cells are innate T cells that recognize bacteria-infected cells and are thought to play a role in autoimmune diseases. Translocation of duodenal bacteria and viruses to the pancreas through the pancreatic duct has been hypothesized to initiate an innate inflammatory response that could contribute to the development of type 1 diabetes, a process that could involve MAIT cells. In this study, we used immunohistochemistry and quantitative PCR to search for evidence of MAIT cells in the insulitic lesions in the pancreas of human patients recently diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Only a few scattered MAIT cells were found within the exocrine parenchyma in all pancreatic samples, but no MAIT cells were found in association to the islets. Also, only low gene expression levels of the MAIT T-cell receptor V alpha 7.2-3 alpha 33 were found in the pancreas of patients with type 1 diabetes, in similar Levels as that in nondiabetic organ donors used as control. The absence of MAIT cells shown in insulitic lesions in humans questions the direct cytotoxic role of these cells in beta-cell destruction.

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