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Cell Immunol. 2010;266(1):7-13. doi: 10.1016/j.cellimm.2010.08.014. Epub 2010 Sep 22.

Rap1A regulates generation of T regulatory cells via LFA-1-dependent and LFA-1-independent mechanisms.

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  • 1Department of Hematology-Oncology and Cancer Biology, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02215, USA.


The small GTPase Rap1A has a critical role in regulating cell-matrix and cell-cell adhesion. In T lymphocytes, Rap1A mediates LFA-1 activation and LFA-1-mediated adhesion. LFA-1 reduces the threshold of TCR signals for low affinity ligands. Previously, we determined that mice expressing constitutively active Rap1A on T cells have increased frequency of CD103(+) T regulatory cells (Treg). We hypothesized that Rap1A-GTP might affect the differentiation of Treg by regulating LFA-1 activation. Using Foxp3-GFP-KI, LFA-1-KO and Rap1A-GTP-Tg mice we determined that Rap1A has an active role in the development of thymic Treg but LFA-1 is not mandatory for this function. Rap1A is also involved in the generation of peripheral Treg and this effect is mediated via LFA-1-dependent and LFA-1-independent mechanisms. Identification of the signaling pathways via which Rap1-GTP contributes to the differentiation of Treg will provide new insights to the function of Rap1A and to designing targeted approaches for generation of Treg for therapeutic applications.

Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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