Le potential thérapeutique de la cytokine Th2 interleukine-13 dans la sclérose en plaques

 

Chloé Hoornaert

Centre de recherche du Centre hospitalier de l'Université de Montréal

 

Domaine : maladies infectieuses et immunitaires

Programme Formation postdoctorale (CITOYENS D'AUTRES PAYS)

Concours 2018-2019

Partenaire :

Société canadienne de la sclérose en plaques

In patients with multiple sclerosis (MS), detrimental white blood cells become activated, enter the brain and cause damage to brain cells. In response to this insult, more immune cells are recruited from the bloodstream, are activated and start producing inflammation-promoting factors. This local accumulation of activated immune cells and so-called ‘pro-inflammatory' factors is highly toxic to the surrounding tissue, causing additional damage to brain tissue. In this project, I will attempt to break this vicious cycle of inflammation by using the potent anti-inflammatory factor interleukin-13.

In previous studies, I established that interleukin-13 regulates the function of immune cells, rendering them protective rather than harmful. As a result, interleukin-13 showed a therapeutic effect in various animal models of inflammation. With this project, I now wish to assess if interleukin-13 has the same modulatory capacity on human cells, comparing immune cells from MS patients and healthy donors. I will evaluate which cell types are sensitive to interleukin-13 modulation and how it alters these cells' functions. Furthermore, I will determine if interleukin-13 also impacts the entry of (disease-causing) immune cells into the brain. Finally, I will investigate if interleukin-13 confers protection against disease in a mouse model of MS.

In conclusion, this project will provide insight into the therapeutic potential of interleukin-13 in human MS. As I previously found that interleukin-13 could significantly limit inflammation and brain damage in mice, my next goal is to establish whether these promising results can be translated to the human pathology.