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Induction and effector functions of TH17 cells

Nature volume 453, pages 10511057 (19 June 2008) | Download Citation

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Abstract

T helper (TH) cells constitute an important arm of the adaptive immune system because they coordinate defence against specific pathogens, and their unique cytokines and effector functions mediate different types of tissue inflammation. The recently discovered TH17 cells, the third subset of effector T helper cells, have been the subject of intense research aimed at understanding their role in immunity and disease. Here we review emerging data suggesting that TH17 cells have an important role in host defence against specific pathogens and are potent inducers of autoimmunity and tissue inflammation. In addition, the differentiation factors responsible for their generation have revealed an interesting reciprocal relationship with regulatory T (Treg) cells, which prevent tissue inflammation and mediate self-tolerance.

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Acknowledgements

This work was supported by grants from the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the National Institutes of Health, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Center for Immunological Tolerance at Harvard, and the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft. V.K.K. is the recipient of the Javits Neuroscience Investigator Award from the National Institutes of Health.

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    • Thomas Korn

    Present address: Neurologische Klinik, Klinikum rechts der Isar, Technische Universität Munich, Germany.

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  1. Center for Neurologic Diseases, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA

    • Estelle Bettelli
    • , Thomas Korn
    • , Mohamed Oukka
    •  & Vijay K. Kuchroo

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Correspondence to Vijay K. Kuchroo.

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