CHAPTER 7: B Cell-based Therapies for Multiple Sclerosis
Published:18 Jun 2019
The traditional view of multiple sclerosis (MS) as a T cell mediated autoimmune disease of the central nervous system (CNS) has evolved into a concept of an immune-mediated disease where complex bi-directional interactions between T cells, B cells and myeloid cells underlie and shape CNS-directed autoimmunity. B cells are now recognized as major contributors to the pathogenesis of MS, largely due to increased understanding of their biology and the profound anti-inflammatory effects demonstrated by B cell depletion in MS. In this chapter we discuss the fundamental roles B cells play in the pathogenesis of MS and review current and future therapeutic strategies targeting B cells in MS, including B cell depletion with various monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against the B cell surface markers CD20 and CD19, anti-B cell cytokine therapies, blocking Bruton's tyrosine kinase (BTK) in B cells, and various immunomodulatory and immunosuppressive effects exerted on B cells by virtually all other approved therapies for MS.