Experimental Brain Research

, Volume 110, Issue 2, pp 223–234 | Cite as

Differential immune responses to fetal intracameral spinal cord and cortex cerebri grafts

  • Masaki Shinoda
  • MaiBritt Giacobini
  • Rainald Schmidt-Kastner
  • Katarzyna Trok
  • Lars Olson
Research Article


While the central nervous system (CNS) has been characterized as an immunologically privileged site, there are also several reports describing immunological reactions within the CNS. A certain degree of immunological privilege has also been ascribed to the anterior chamber of the eye. We have used the intraocular transplantation model to study immunological reactions in transplants of embryonic neural tissue. Outbred SpragueDawley rats and inbred Fisher rats were used. Pieces of rat parietal cortex or the cervical spinal cord were prepared from embryonic day 14 and implanted into the eye chambers of adult rats of the same strain. Following intraocular maturation, grafts were analysed using antibodies against: major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I, MHC class II; rat antigens CD4, CD8, CD11b; T-cell receptor; rat antigen ED1; and glial fibrillary acidic protein. Using this set of markers for immunological reactions, transplants were scored on a blind basis. We found no significant differences in immunological scores between transplants obtained from different litters of fetuses of the outbred animals. Grafting in the outbred strain led to increased numbers of immunologically reactive cells in the grafts. This was not seen in grafts in the inbred strain. Spinal cord transplants led to a significantly higher degree of cytotoxic immunity-related cells expressing MHC class II as well as CD4-positive cells. There was a positive correlation between ED1 negativity and well-developed ramified microglia. From these results we conclude also that well-developed intraocular CNS tissue grafts do contain cellular evidence of immunological events and that different areas of the CNS may provoke different degrees of response. Reactive microglial proliferation appears to be one of the most sensitive ways to monitor the immunological condition of grafted CNS tissue.

Key words

Transplantation immunology Spinal cord Cortex Ramified and reactive microglia Intraocular transplantation Rat 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Masaki Shinoda
    • 1
  • MaiBritt Giacobini
    • 1
  • Rainald Schmidt-Kastner
    • 1
  • Katarzyna Trok
    • 1
  • Lars Olson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of NeuroscienceBerzelius Laboratory, Karolinska InstituteStockholmSweden

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