The differences in T and B cell subsets in thyroid of children with Graves' disease and Hashimoto's thyroiditis
Iwona Ben-Skowronek, Leszek Szewczyk, Beata Kulik-Rechberger, Elzbieta Korobowicz
Author Affiliations: Department of Pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetology (Ben-Skowronek I, Szewczyk L), Department of Neonatology and Infant Pathology (Rechberger B), Department of Pathology (Korobowicz E), Medical University, Ul. Chodzki 2, 20-093 Lublin, Poland. This work was presented as the poster in the 35th Annual Meeting of European Thyroid Association.
Corresponding Author: Iwona Ben-Skowronek, Department of Pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetology, Medical University, Ul. Chodzki 2, 20-093 Lublin, Poland (Tel: +48 81 7185 440; Email: firstname.lastname@example.org)
Background: The differences between Graves' disease (GD) and Hashimoto's thyroiditis (HT) suggest that changes in the subsets of T cells may have an influence on the course of these reactions.
Methods: This study included 90 children: 30 with GD, 30 with HT, and 30 healthy children as controls. After thyroidectomy, standard histological examinations and immunohistochemical reactions were performed in paraffin specimens with monoclonal antibodies against T cell markers CD3, CD4, CD8 as well as against CD79 alpha B cells. Ultrathin sections were examined under a transmission electron microscope.
Results: Autoimmune reaction in GD consisted of an increased number of CD4+ T cells (3.17¡À4.27%) and plasma cells (22.89¡À8.61%) producing thyroid-stimulating hormone-receptors and stimulating thyrocytes to activity. The number of CD8+ T cells was increased in children with HT (20.54¡À0.68%) as compared with the controls (0.65¡À0.30%). The autoimmune reaction in the HT children showed antibody dependent cytotoxicity with a low number of CD4+ T cells and an increased number of CD8+ T cells in the thyroid tissue in comparison with that in the GD children and the controls. Plasma cells (31.65¡À9.11%) in this situation produced the antibodies involved in cytotoxic reactions against thyrocytes.
Conclusions: Graves' disease is characterized by the increased number of CD4+ T cells and CD8+ T cells. Hashimoto's thyroiditis is characterized by the low number of CD4+ T cells and increased number of CD8+ T cells. CD8+ T cells have cytotoxic properties only in Hashimoto's thyroiditis.
Key words: autoimmunity; lymphocytes; thyroid disorders
World J Pediatr 2013;9(3):245-250