Naturally occurring CD4+CD25+ regulatory T cells (Tregs) play a critical role in the control of periphery tolerance to self-antigens. Interestingly, they also control immune responses to allergens and transplant antigens. Recent studies in animal models have shown that adoptive transfer of CD4+CD25+ Tregs can prevent or even cure allergic and autoimmune diseases, and appear to induce transplantation tolerance. Thus, adoptive cell therapy using patient-specific CD4+CD25+ Tregs has been emerged as individualized medicine for the treatment of inflammatory disease including allergy, autoimmune disease and transplant rejection. Furthermore, strategies to activate and expand antigen-specific CD4+CD25+ Tregs in vivo using pharmacological agents may represent a novel avenue for drug development.
Keywords: CD4+CD25+ regulatory T cells, FoxP3, adoptive cell therapy, antigen-specificity, allergy, autoimmune disease, transplantation tolerance, pharmacological agents
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