CD39+Foxp3+ regulatory T Cells suppress pathogenic Th17 cells and are impaired in multiple sclerosis

Jean M Fletcher, Roisin Lonergan, Lisa Costelloe, Katie Kinsella, Barry Moran, Cliona O'Farrelly, Niall Tubridy, Kingston H G Mills
Journal of Immunology 2009 December 1, 183 (11): 7602-10
Despite the fact that CD4(+)CD25(+)Foxp3(+) regulatory T cells (Treg cells) play a central role in maintaining self-tolerance and that IL-17-producing CD4(+) T cells (Th17 cells) are pathogenic in many autoimmune diseases, evidence to date has indicated that Th17 cells are resistant to suppression by human Foxp3(+) Treg cells. It was recently demonstrated that CD39, an ectonucleotidase which hydrolyzes ATP, is expressed on a subset of human natural Treg cells. We found that although both CD4(+)CD25(high)CD39(+) and CD4(+)CD25(high)CD39(-) T cells suppressed proliferation and IFN-gamma production by responder T cells, only the CD4(+)CD25(high)CD39(+), which were predominantly FoxP3(+), suppressed IL-17 production, whereas CD4(+)CD25(high)CD39(-) T cells produced IL-17. An examination of T cells from multiple sclerosis patients revealed a normal frequency of CD4(+)CD25(+)CD127(low)FoxP3(+), but interestingly a deficit in the relative frequency and the suppressive function of CD4(+)CD25(+)CD127(low)FoxP3(+)CD39(+) Treg cells. The mechanism of suppression by CD39(+) Treg cells appears to require cell contact and can be duplicated by adenosine, which is produced from ATP by the ectonucleotidases CD39 and CD73. Our findings suggest that CD4(+)CD25(+)Foxp3(+)CD39(+) Treg cells play an important role in constraining pathogenic Th17 cells and their reduction in multiple sclerosis patients might lead to an inability to control IL-17 mediated autoimmune inflammation.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"