Author(s): Mazzarella G
Celiac disease (CD) is a T-cell mediated immune disease in which gliadin-derived peptides activate lamina propria effector CD4+ T cells. This activation leads to the release of cytokines, compatible with a Th1-like pattern, which play a crucial role in the pathogenesis of CD, controlling many aspects of the inflammatory immune response. Recent studies have shown that a novel subset of effector T cells, characterized by expression of high levels of IL-17A, termed Th17 cells, plays a pathogenic role in CD. While these effector T cell subsets produce proinflammatory cytokines, which cause substantial tissue injury in vivo in CD, recent studies have suggested the existence of additional CD4(+) T cell subsets with suppressor functions. These subsets include type 1 regulatory T cells and CD25(+)CD4(+) regulatory T cells, expressing the master transcription factor Foxp3, which have important implications for disease progression.