Maintenance of CD8+ T-cell anergy by CD4+CD25+ regulatory T cells in chronic graft-versus-host disease.

Research paper by Juyang J Kim, Hye J HJ Kim, Woon S WS Choi, Seok H SH Nam, Hong R HR Cho, Byungsuk B Kwon

Indexed on: 03 Nov '06Published on: 03 Nov '06Published in: Experimental & Molecular Medicine


In a murine model of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)-like chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGVHD), donor CD8+ T cells rapidly fall into anergy to host cells, while donor CD4+ T cells hyperactivate B cells and break B-cell tolerance to self-Ags in the recipient mouse. The functional recovery of donor CD8+ T cells can result in the conversion of cGVHD to acute GVHD (aGVHD), indicating that donor CD8+ T-cell anergy is a restriction factor in the development of cGVHD. In this report, we present evidence that donor CD4+CD25+ regulatory T cells (Treg cells) are critical in maintaining the donor CD8+ T-cell anergy and thus suppressing the development of aGVHD in mice that are naturally prone to cGVHD. Our results provide a novel insight into the role of Treg cells in determining cGVHD versus aGVHD.