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Front Immunol. 2018 Aug 13;9:1792. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2018.01792. eCollection 2018.

Several Follicular Regulatory T Cell Subsets With Distinct Phenotype and Function Emerge During Germinal Center Reactions.

Fazilleau N1,2,3,4, Aloulou M1,2,3,4.

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Centre de Physiopathologie de Toulouse Purpan, Toulouse, France.
INSERM U1043, Toulouse, France.
CNRS UMR5282, Toulouse, France.
Université Toulouse III Paul-Sabatier, Toulouse, France.


An efficient B cell immunity requires a dynamic equilibrium between positive and negative signals. In germinal centers (GCs), T follicular helper cells are supposed to be the positive regulator while T follicular regulatory (Tfr) cells were assigned to be the negative regulators. Indeed, Tfr cells are considered as a homogenous cell population dedicated to dampen the GC extent. Moreover, Tfr cells prevent autoimmunity since their dysregulation leads to production of self-reactive antibodies (Ab). However, a growing corpus of evidence has revealed additional and unexpected functions for Tfr cells in the regulation of B cell responses. This review provides an overview of the Tfr cell contribution and presents Tfr cell proprieties in the context of vaccination.


T follicular helper cells; T follicular regulatory cells; germinal centers; heterogeneity; subsets

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