Mucosal administration of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE)-specific autoantigens can reduce the onset of disease. To examine whether cholera toxin-B-subunit (CTB)-conjugated EAE-specific T-cell epitope can reduce development of the autoimmune disease in mice, we produced a recombinant hybrid molecule of CTB fusion protein linked with proteolipid-protein (PLP)-peptide 139-151(C140S) at levels up to 0.1 gram per liter culture media in Bacillus brevis as a secretion-expression system. Amino acid sequencing and GM1-receptor binding assay showed that this expression system produced a uniformed recombinant hybrid protein. EAE was induced in SJL/J mice by systemic administration with the PLP-peptide. When nasally immunized 5 times with 70 μg rCTB PLP-peptide hybrid protein, mice showed a significantly suppressed development of ongoing EAE and an inhibition of both the PLP-peptide-specific delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH) responses and leukocyte infiltration into the spinal cord. In contrast, all mice given the PLP-peptide alone or the PLP-peptide with the free form of CTB did not suppress the development of EAE and DTH responses. These results suggest that nasal treatment with the recombinant B. brevis-derived hybrid protein of CTB and autoantigen peptide could prove useful in the control of multiple sclerosis. © 2001 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.