Send to

Choose Destination
PLoS One. 2015 Mar 20;10(3):e0116723. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0116723. eCollection 2015.

Immune derangements in patients with myelofibrosis: the role of Treg, Th17, and sIL2Rα.

Author information

Division of Hematology/Oncology, Brookdale University Hospital Medical Center, Brooklyn, New York, United States of America.


Myelofibrosis (MF), including primary myelofibrosis, post-essential thrombocythemia MF, and post-polycythemia vera MF, has been reported to be associated with autoimmune phenomena. IMiDs have been reported to be effective in some patients with MF, presumably for their immune-modulator effects. We therefore sought to elucidate the immune derangements in patients with MF. We found no differences in T regulatory cells (Treg) and T helper 17 (Th17) cells in MF patients and normal healthy controls. However, we found significantly elevated soluble interleukin 2 alpha (sIL2Rα) in MF patients compared to those with other myeloproliferative neoplasm diseases and normal healthy controls. Our studies with MF patients further revealed that Treg cells were the predominant cells producing sIL2Rα. sIL2Rα and IL2 complex induced the formation of Treg cells but not the formation of Th1 or Th17 cells. sIL2Rα induced CD8+ T cell proliferation in the presence of Treg cells. Monocytes or neutrophils had no effect on the production of sIL2Rα by Treg cells. Furthermore, we found plasma sIL2Rα levels were correlated to the auto-immune serology in MPN patients and ruxolitinib significantly inhibits the sIL2Rα production by the Treg cells in MF patients which may explain the effects of ruxolitinib on the relief of constitutional symptoms. All these findings suggest that sIL2Rα likely plays a significant role in autoimmune phenomena seen in patients with MF. Further studies of immune derangement may elucidate the mechanism of IMiD, and exploration of immune modulators may prove to be important for treating myelofibrosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Public Library of Science Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center