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Hiding under the skin: Interleukin-17–producing γδ T cells go under the skin?

Despite the irrefutable role of inflammation in psoriasis, a complete knowledge of what immune cells and cytokines are involved during initiation and progression of this skin disease is lacking. Moreover, the complexities of the immune cell network and potential differences between mice and humans have led to translational failures. It is therefore important that we acquire in-depth understanding of what inflammatory players, of the many involved, are crucial, if we wish to develop effective therapies. In 'Bedside to Bench', James Krueger discusses how a subset of T cells, TH17 cells, which release interleukin-17 in humans, seem to be essential for pathogenesis of psoriasis. The interplay between interleukin-17 and other cytokines that may potentially be involved in psoriasis also needs further investigation. Additionally, there are open questions as to what subset of T cells, other than TH17, also produce interleukin-17 and when. In 'Bench to Bedside', Burkhard Becher and Stanislav Pantelyushin examine this issue by looking at a mouse model of skin inflammation that resembles psoriasis in humans. A class of skin-invading innate immune cells called γδ T cells was shown to drive skin inflammation in this model, particularly during the early stages of the disease, suggesting that innate immunity plays an important part in the initiation of psoriasis.

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Figure 1: Initiation of psoriasis by γδ T cells and ILCs.

Debbie Maizels


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Correspondence to Burkhard Becher.

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Becher, B., Pantelyushin, S. Hiding under the skin: Interleukin-17–producing γδ T cells go under the skin?. Nat Med 18, 1748–1750 (2012).

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