Author(s): Chen CY, Huang D, Yao S, Halliday L, Zeng G,
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Abstract The possibility that simultaneous expansion of T regulatory cells (Treg) and T effector cells early postinfection can confer some immunological benefits has not been studied. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that early, simultaneous cytokine expansion of Treg and T effector cells in a tissue infection site can allow these T cell populations to act in concert to control tissue inflammation/damage while containing infection. IL-2 treatments early after Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection of macaques induced simultaneous expansion of CD4(+)CD25(+)Foxp3(+) Treg, CD8(+)CD25(+)Foxp3(+) T cells, and CD4(+) T effector/CD8(+) T effector/Vγ2Vδ2 T effector populations producing anti-M. tuberculosis cytokines IFN-γ and perforin, and conferred resistance to severe TB inflammation and lesions. IL-2-expanded Foxp3(+) Treg readily accumulated in pulmonary compartment, but despite this, rapid pulmonary trafficking/accumulation of IL-2-activated T effector populations still occurred. Such simultaneous recruitments of IL-2-expanded Treg and T effector populations to pulmonary compartment during M. tuberculosis infection correlated with IL-2-induced resistance to TB lesions without causing Treg-associated increases in M. tuberculosis burdens. In vivo depletion of IL-2-expanded CD4(+)Foxp3(+) Treg and CD4(+) T effectors during IL-2 treatment of M. tuberculosis-infected macaques significantly reduced IL-2-induced resistance to TB lesions, suggesting that IL-2-expanded CD4(+) T effector cells and Treg contributed to anti-TB immunity. Thus, IL-2 can simultaneously activate and expand T effector cells and Foxp3(+) Treg populations and confer resistance to severe TB without enhancing M. tuberculosis infection.
This article was published in J Immunol
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Cellular Immunology