Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Neuroimmune Pharmacol. 2012 Dec;7(4):835-42. doi: 10.1007/s11481-012-9396-6. Epub 2012 Aug 25.

Regulation of mu opioid receptor expression in developing T cells.

Author information

  • 1Center for Substance Abuse Research, Center for Inflammation, Translational and Clinical Lung Research, Temple University School of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA 19140, USA.


We have previously reported that functionally active μ-opioid receptors (MOR) are constitutively expressed at relatively low levels by developing T cells in the thymus. However, very little is known about the regulation of MOR expression by immature T cells. In this report, we first attempted to determine the effect of T cell receptor-induced T cell activation on the expression of MOR. We activated T cells with either the combination of anti-CD3 and CD28, or with superantigen, and observed a substantial increase in MOR transcript expression. We also chose to examine the effect of cytokine-mediated T cell activation on the expression of this opioid receptor. We selected certain cytokines that play a role in T cell development and are known to be present at functional levels in the thymus gland. Our results show that interferon γ (IFNγ), IL-1β, and IL-2, and in particular transforming growth factor-β (TGFβ), all induced significant increases in MOR transcript expression. On the other hand, both TNFα and IL-7 exhibited much weaker effects on MOR expression. These results show that MOR expression by developing T cells is strongly regulated by several cytokines involved in T cell development in the thymus gland.

Comment in

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Springer Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk