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George Carayanniotis

BioMedical Sciences
B.Sc. Patras, Ph.D. Toronto

Professor of Medicine

Jointly appointed in the
Divisions of Endocrinology and Biomedical Sciences

Rm: H5307
t: 709-864-6009



Current research activities focus on two areas:
  1. Immunoregulation of experimental autoimmune thyroiditis (EAT). The main objectives in this area are: a) to continue the efforts in mapping pathogenic epitopes in thyroglobulin (Tg); b) to elucidate mechanisms that abrogate immune tolerance to thyroid antigens; and c) to develop methods for prevention or amelioration of EAT using Tg peptides as model antigens.
  2. The role of iodine in accelerating spontaneous autoimmune thyroiditis. NOD.H2h4 mice develop spontaneous autoimmune thyroiditis (SAT) and this process has been found to accelerate by enhanced dietary intake of iodide.  We  explore mechanisms underlying this phenomenon at the level of antigenic epitopes, apoptotic processes of thyrocytes and involvement of immunoregulatory processes that favour induction of disease.
Dr. Carayanniotis' research has been mainly supported by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) (former Medical Research Council of Canada). Other agencies, such as the Thyroid Foundation of Canada, NATO, the Burroughs-Wellcome Trust Fund and Memorial University have provided support in the form of collaborative grants, travel grants, summer student scholarships and student fellowships

Recent Research Articles

Zannikou, M., Bellou, S., Eliades, P., Hatzioannou, A., Mantzaris, M., Carayanniotis, G., Avrameas, S., Lymberi, P.
2016. DNA-histone complexes as ligands amplify cell penetration and nuclear targeting of anti-DNA antibodies via energy-independent mechanisms. Immunology 147:73-81

Kolypetri, P., King, J., Larijani, M. and Carayanniotis, G. 2015. Genes and environment as   predisposing factors in
autoimmunity: acceleration of spontaneous thyroiditis by dietary iodide in NOD.H2h4 mice. Int. Rev. Immunology 34:

Kolypetri, P., Randell, E., Van Vliet, B.N., and Carayanniotis, G. 2014. High salt intake does not exacerbate murine autoimmune thyroiditis. Clin. Exp. Immunol. 176: 336-340

Kolypetri, P. and Carayanniotis, G. 2014. Apoptosis of NOD.H2h4 thyrocytes by low concentrations of iodide is associated with impaired control of oxidative stress. Thyroid  24: 1170-8

Kolypetri, P., Carayanniotis, K., Rahman, S., Georghiou, P.E., Magafa V., Cordopatis, P.  and Carayanniotis, G. 2014. The thyroxine-containing thyroglobulin peptide (aa. 2549-2560) is a target epitope in iodide-accelerated autoimmune thyroiditis. J. Immunol.  193:96-101

Kolypetri, P., Jiang, H.,  and Carayanniotis, G. 2013. Identification of pathogenic T cell epitopes near cathepsin cleavage sites in thyroglobulin. J. Immunol. 190: 1466-71

Hatzioannou, A., Alevizaki, M., Carayanniotis, G., Lymberi, P. 2012. Fine epitope mapping within the pathogenic thyroglobulin peptide 2340-2359: minimal epitopes retaining antigenicity across various MHC haplotypes are not necessarily immunogenic. Immunology 135: 245-53

Carayanniotis, G. 2011. Molecular parameters linking thyroglobulin iodination with autoimmune thyroiditis. Hormones 10: 27-35

Kolypetri, P., Noel, N.A., Carayanniotis, K.A.,  and Carayanniotis, G. 2010. Iodine
content of thyroglobulin in NOD.H2h4 mice developing iodine-accelerated autoimmune thyroiditis.  Hormones  9: 151-60