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Self-specific memory regulatory T cells protect embryos at implantation in mice.


ABSTRACT: Regulatory T cells (Tregs) play crucial roles in both fetal and tumor development. We recently showed that immunosurveillance by pre-existing CD44(high)CD62L(low) activated/memory Tregs (amTregs) specific for self-Ags protects emergent tumor cells in mice. This Treg response of a memory type is more rapid than and dominates the antitumor response of tumor-specific effector T cells. In this study, we report striking similarities between the early Treg responses to embryo and tumor implantation. Tregs are rapidly recruited to uterus-draining lymph nodes and activated in the first days after embryo implantation in both syngeneic and allogeneic matings; express the markers of the amTreg subset; and are at least in part self-Ag specific, as seen in tumor emergence. Unlike in the tumor emergence setting, however, for which preimmunization against tumor Ags is sufficient for complete tumor eradication even in the presence of Tregs, Treg depletion is additionally required for high frequencies of fetus loss after preimmunization against paternal tissue Ags. Thus, amTregs play a major role in protecting embryos in both naive and preimmune settings. This role and the ensuing therapeutic potential are further highlighted by showing that Treg stimulation, directly by low-dose IL-2 or indirectly by Fms-related tyrosine kinase 3 ligand, led to normal pregnancy rates in a spontaneous abortion-prone model.

SUBMITTER: Chen T 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC4107421 | BioStudies | 2013-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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