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Mol Cell Biol. 2005 Dec;25(24):11035-46.

Deficiency in expression of the signaling protein Sin/Efs leads to T-lymphocyte activation and mucosal inflammation.

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Department of Pharmacology, College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University, New York, NY 10032, USA.


Our studies have concentrated on elucidating the role of the signaling protein Sin in T-lymphocyte function. We have previously shown that Sin overexpression inhibits T-lymphocyte development and activation. Here we show that Sin-deficient mice exhibit exaggerated immune responses characterized by enhanced cytokine secretion and T-cell-dependent antibody production. Excessive T-cell responses in young mice correlate with spontaneous development of inflammatory lesions in different organs of aged Sin(-/-) mice, particularly the small intestine. The intestinal inflammation is characterized by T- and B-cell infiltrates in the lamina propria, which correlate with crypt enlargement and marked villus expansion and/or damage. Similar to the human intestinal inflammatory disorder Crohn's disease (CD), and in contrast to most mouse models of mucosal inflammation, inflammatory lesions in the gastrointestinal tract of Sin(-/-) mice are restricted to the small bowel. Taken together, these results suggest that Sin regulates immune system and T-lymphocyte function and that immune system dysfunction in the absence of Sin may underlie the pathogenesis of tissue-specific inflammation and enteropathies such as CD.

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