More about CIDP and pathogenic MSRV

Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyradiculoneuropathy (CIDP) is a rare autoimmune disorder of the peripheral nervous system (PNS). CIDP is related to multifocal inflammation and demyelinating lesions of the proximal PNS. Its clinical presentation is heterogeneous and its diagnosis is challenging because of its unknown etiology and the lack of specific biomarkers. Existing CIDP therapies are intravenous human immunoglobulins (IVIG), corticosteroids and plasma exchange. Long-term therapy is often limited by side effects and one-third of patients are refractory to existing treatments. This illustrates a critical unmet medical need for new treatments of CIDP and diagnostic biomarkers in this indication. Several studies have confirmed that MSRV-ENV is found in half of CIDP patients and that this protein is expressed in Schwann cells in CIDP lesions. The effects of MSRV-ENV expression were studied in vitro on cultured human Schwann cells. The cells expressing MSRV-ENV presented a strong and significant increase in IL-6 and CXCL10 transcript levels, which are both pro-inflammatory.