Successful induction of severe destructive arthritis by the transfer of in vitro-activated synovial fluid T cells from patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in severe combined immunodeficient (SCID) mice

Clin Exp Immunol. 1996 May;104(2):247-54. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-2249.1996.979670.x.


In order to investigate the role of pathogenic T cells in RA, the establishment of an RA model using patients' T cells is thought to be essential. In this study, multiple and severe destructive arthritis was established by transferring in vitro-stimulated synovial fluid T (SFT) cells from patients with RA through simultaneous injection into knee joint and peritoneal cavity of SCID mice without causing xenogeneic graft-versus-host disease (GVHD). Neither the transfer of unstimulated SFT cells nor sole i.p. injection was sufficient to induce severe arthritis. Interestingly, in contrast with SFT cells, in vitro-activated peripheral blood lymphocytes from RA patients failed to trigger such arthritis, suggesting that pathogenic T cells might be concentrated in synovial fluid of RA patients. This, the first severe arthritis model mimicking RA induced by RA patients' T cells, is expected to provide important information about RA pathogenesis and a possible therapeutic approach.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Animals
  • Antigens, Surface / analysis
  • Arthritis / etiology*
  • Arthritis / immunology*
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / immunology*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Female
  • Graft vs Host Disease / etiology
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Leukocytes, Mononuclear / transplantation
  • Lymphocyte Activation*
  • Lymphocyte Transfusion*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, SCID
  • Middle Aged
  • Synovial Fluid / immunology*
  • T-Lymphocytes / classification
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes / transplantation


  • Antigens, Surface