Send to

Choose Destination
Gastroenterology. 2009 May;136(5):1721-31. doi: 10.1053/j.gastro.2009.01.049. Epub 2009 Jan 27.

Amelioration of colitis by genetically engineered murine regulatory T cells redirected by antigen-specific chimeric receptor.

Author information

Department of Immunology, The Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel.



The therapeutic application of regulatory T cells (Tregs) for the treatment of inflammatory diseases is limited by the scarcity of antigen-specific Tregs. A preferred approach to endow effector T cells (Teff) with a desired specificity uses chimeric immune receptors with antibody-type specificity. Accordingly, employing such chimeric immune receptors to redirect Tregs to sites of inflammation may be a useful therapeutic approach to alleviate a broad scope of diseases in which an uncontrolled inflammatory response plays a major role.


To enable application of the approach in clinical setting, which requires the genetic modification of the patient's own Tregs, we describe here a novel protocol that allows the efficient retroviral transduction and 2,4,6-trinitrophenol-specific expansion of murine naturally occurring regulatory T cells (nTregs), with a 2,4,6-trinitrophenol-specific tripartite chimeric receptor.


Transduced Tregs maintained their Foxp3 level, could undergo repeated expansion upon ex vivo encounter with their cognate antigen in a major histocompatibility complex-independent, costimulation-independent, and contact-dependent manner and specifically suppressed Teff cells. Adoptive transfer of small numbers of the transduced nTregs was associated with antigen-specific, dose-dependent amelioration of trinitrobenzenesulphonic acid colitis.


This study demonstrates that nTregs can be efficiently transduced to express functional, antigen-specific chimeric receptors that enable the specific suppression of effector T cells both in vitro and in vivo. This approach may enable future cell-based therapeutic application in inflammatory bowel disease, as well as other inflammatory disorders.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center