The imbalance between regulatory and IL-17-secreting CD4+ T cells in lupus patients

Jilin Ma, Jianning Yu, Xiaojuan Tao, Long Cai, Julie Wang, Song Guo Zheng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

70 Scopus citations

Abstract

It has been well recognized that a deficit of numbers and function of CD4+CD25+Foxp3+ cells (Treg) is attributed to the development of some autoimmune diseases; however, there are controversial data regarding the suppressive effect of Treg cells on the T cell response in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). Additionally, IL-17-producing cells (Th17) have been recently emerged as a new pathogenic cell, but their role in lupus remains unclear. In this study, we studied the connection between Treg and Th17 cells in lupus patients. We observed that, while Treg or Th17 cells alone were not correlated to SLE development, the ratio of Treg to Th17 cells in active SLE patients is significantly lower than that in inactive SLE patients and healthy controls, and we also found corticosteroid treatment increased the ratio of Treg to Th17 cells in active SLE patients. Moreover, this ratio is inversely correlated with the severity of active SLE. The present study indicates that active SLE appears to exist as an imbalance between Treg and Th17 cells. Correction of this Treg/Th17 imbalance may have therapeutic impact for patients with SLE.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1251-1258
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Rheumatology
Volume29
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Rheumatology

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