This week in therapeutics




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Autoimmune disease

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA)

Heat shock
protein 60

Mouse studies suggest Treg cells targeting Hsp60 could help treat RA. In a collagen-induced arthritis mouse model for RA, infusion of CD8+ Treg cells that recognized a peptide fragment of Hsp60 decreased disease progression compared with vehicle infusion and eliminated autoreactive T helper type 17 (Th17) and follicula helper T cells. In the mouse model, methotrexate plus Treg cell infusion synergistically decreased disease severity compared with either treatment alone. Next steps include testing the strategy in a humanized mouse model for arthritis.
The generic methotrexate is marketed to treat cancer and autoimmune diseases.

SciBX 6(9); doi:10.1038/scibx.2013.210
Published online March 7, 2013

Patent application filed; available for licensing

Leavenworth, J.W. et al. J. Clin. Invest.;
published online Feb. 8, 2013;
Contact: Harvey Cantor, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, Mass.