Clinical immunology (Orlando, Fla.) 2018 03 19() pii 10.1016/j.clim.2018.03.007
Retroviruses including Human Endogenous Retroviruses (HERVs), contain a conserved region with highly immunomodulatory functions in the transmembrane proteins in envelope gene (env) named immunosuppressive domain (ISU). In this report, we demonstrate that Env59-GP3 peptide holds therapeutic potential in a mouse model of myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein (MOG)-induced experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). The results show that this specific HERV-H derived ISU peptide, but not peptide derived from another env gene HERV-K, decreased the development of EAE in C57BL/6 mice, accompanied by reduced demyelination and inhibition of inflammatory cells. Moreover, here we tested the effect of peptides on macrophages differentiation. The treatment with Env59-GPS peptide modulate the pro-inflammatory M1 profile and anti-inflammatory M2 macrophages, being shown by inhibiting inflammatory M1 hallmark genes/cytokines expression and enhancing expression of M2 associated markers. These results demonstrate that Env59-GP3 ISU peptide has therapeutic potential in EAE possibly through inducing the polarization of M2 macrophages and inhibiting inflammatory responses.