Suppressor cells of popliteal lymph node origin are involved in the in vivo and in vitro control of experimental allergic encephalomyelitis effector cells in the Lewis rat.Eur J Immunol. 1991 Mar; 21(3):731-6.EJ
Lewis rats immunized in the hind footpads with total guinea pig spinal cord tissue in mycobacteria-enriched complete Freund's adjuvant develop chronic relapsing experimental allergic encephalomyelitis. It was previously shown that popliteal lymph node cells (LNC) isolated at the time of the first recovery (day 16) and transferred into naive syngeneic recipients protect from active induction of the disease. On the other hand, inguinal LNC taken at the onset of the disease (day 11) induce under similar conditions an acceleration of the appearance of the clinical symptoms. In this report, we show that the in vivo suppressive activity of popliteal LNC is associated with the absence of production of interleukin 2 in this compartment. The lack of production of this lymphokine and the suppressive activity can be detected only in the popliteal compartment and appear as early as day 11 after immunization. We show that this suppressive population displays in vitro inhibitory activity on the proliferative response of the disease effectors (inguinal LNC) to guinea pig myelin basic protein. This suppressive activity is not abrogated by addition of interleukin 2, suggesting that these suppressor cells do not inhibit the proliferation by absorption of the released lymphokine or by inhibition of its production.