Delivery of an miR155 inhibitor by anti-CD20 single-chain antibody into B cells reduces the acetylcholine receptor-specific autoantibodies and ameliorates experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis


  • This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (30971033 and 81271325).


MicroRNA-155 (miR155) is required for antibody production after vaccination with attenuated Salmonella. miR155-deficient B cells generated reduced germinal centre responses and failed to produce high-affinity immunoglobulin (Ig)G1 antibodies. In this study, we observed up-regulation of miR155 in the peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) of patients with myasthenia gravis (MG), and miR155 was also up-regulated in torpedo acetylcholine receptor (T-AChR)-stimulated B cells. We used an inhibitor of miR155 conjugated to anti-CD20 single-chain antibody to treat both the cultured B cells and the experimental autoimmune MG (EAMG) mice. Our results demonstrated that silencing of miR155 by its inhibitor impaired the B cell-activating factor (BAFF)-R-related signalling pathway and reduced the translocation of nuclear factor (NF)-κB into the nucleus. Additionally, AChR-specific autoantibodies were reduced, which may be related to the altered amounts of marginal zone B cells and memory B cells in the spleens of EAMG mice. Our study suggests that miR155 may be a promising target for the clinical therapy of MG.