Submitted to: Federation of Analytical Chemistry
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/5/2003
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: The Smyth line (SL) chicken is the only animal model for autoimmune vitiligo (SLV) that recapitulates the entire spectrum of clinical and biological manifestations of the human disease. Vitiligo is a common acquired hypopigmentary disorder characterized by a loss of epidermal pigment cells (melanocytes). As in many autoimmune diseases, SLV is a multifactorial disorder involving a genetic component, an immune system component and an environmental component. In this study, scientists at University of Arkansas collaborated with ARS scientists to study the role of cell-mediated immunity in SLV and the results indicated an important role of cell-mediated immunity (CMI) in SLV. The results showed interferon (IFN)gamma production in vitiliginous feathers was a factor in the pathogenesis of this disease. As IFN-gamma is a key cytokine in cell-mediated immune responses in both chickens and mammals, the presence of IFN-gamma in vitiliginous feathers further supports a role of cell-mediated immunity in SLV. This information will enhance our knowledge of autoimmune disease affecting melanocytes.
Technical Abstract: The Smyth line (SL) chicken is an animal model for autoimmune vitiligo, an acquired hypopigmentary disorder characterized by a loss of epidermal pigment cells. Evidence suggests an important role of cell-mediated in SL vitiligo (SLV) and pigment cell loss in SLV is associated with the presence of interferon gamma (IFN-gamma) in the feather. To further examine the role of IFN-gamma in the expression of SLV, SL chicks were injected twice per week for the first 6 weeks of life with recombinant chicken IFN-gamma. Vitiligo developed in 87.5% of female and 0% of male SL chicks injected with INF-gamma, suggesting a role of IFN- in SLV.