Brauner S, Folkersen L, Kvarnström M, Meisgen S, Petersen S, Franzén-Malmros M, Mofors J, Brokstad KA, Klareskog L, Jonsson R, Westerberg LS, Trollmo C, Malmström V, Ambrosi A, Kuchroo VK, Nordmark G, Wahren-Herlenius M
Ann. Rheum. Dis. 76 (10) 1755-1763 [2017-10-00; online 2017-07-31]
Vaccination of patients with rheumatic disease has been reported to result in lower antibody titres than in healthy individuals. However, studies primarily include patients on immunosuppressive therapy. Here, we investigated the immune response of treatment-naïve patients diagnosed with primary Sjögren's syndrome (pSS) to an H1N1 influenza vaccine. Patients with Sjögren's syndrome without immunomodulatory treatment and age-matched and gender-matched healthy controls were immunised with an H1N1 influenza vaccine and monitored for serological and cellular immune responses. Clinical symptoms were monitored with a standardised form. IgG class switch and plasma cell differentiation were induced Surprisingly, treatment-naïve patients with Sjögren's syndrome developed higher H1N1 IgG titres of greater avidity than healthy controls on vaccination. Notably, off-target B cells were also triggered resulting in increased anti-EBV and autoantibody titres. Endosomal toll-like receptor activation of naïve B cells This comprehensive analysis of the immune response in autoimmune patients to exogenous stimulation identifies a mechanistic basis for the B cell hyperactivity in Sjögren's syndrome, and suggests that caution is warranted when considering vaccination in non-treated autoimmune patients.