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PLoS One. 2010 Jan 11;5(1):e8639. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0008639.

Expression and function of TNF and IL-1 receptors on human regulatory T cells.

Author information

1
Department of Microbiology, New York University School of Medicine, New York, New York, United States of America.

Abstract

Regulatory T cells (Tregs) suppress immune activation and are critical in preventing autoimmune diseases. While the ability of Tregs to inhibit proliferation of other T cells is well established, it is not yet clear whether Tregs also modulate inflammatory cytokines during an immune response. Here, we show that the expression of inflammatory cytokine receptors IL-1R1 and TNFR2 were higher on resting mature Tregs compared to naïve or memory T cells. While upon activation through the T cell receptor (TCR), expression of IL-1R1 and TNFR2 were upregulated on all T cell subsets, IL-1R1 maintained significantly higher expression on activated Tregs as compared to other T cell subsets. The decoy receptor for IL-1 (IL-1R2) was not expressed by any of the resting T cells but was rapidly upregulated and preferentially expressed upon TCR-stimulation on Tregs. In addition, we found that Tregs also expressed high levels of mRNA for IL-1 antagonist, IL-1RA. TCR-stimulation of naïve T cells in the presence of TGFbeta, which induces FOXP3 expression, however did not result in upregulation of IL-1R1 or IL-1R2. In addition, ectopic expression of FOXP3 in non-Tregs, while causing significant upregulation of IL-1R1 and IL-1R2, did not achieve the levels seen in bona fide Tregs. We also determined that resting human Tregs expressing IL-1R1 did not have higher suppressive capacity compared to IL-1R1- Tregs, suggesting that IL-1R1 does not discriminate suppressive resting Tregs in healthy individuals. Functionally, activated human Tregs displayed a capacity to neutralize IL-1beta, which suggests a physiological significance for the expression of IL-1 decoy receptor on Tregs. In conclusion, our findings that human Tregs preferentially express receptors for TNF and IL-1 suggest a potential function in sensing and dampening local inflammation.

PMID:
20066156
PMCID:
PMC2799662
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0008639
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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