Regulation of helper T cell responses to staphylococcal superantigens

SB Cameron, MC Nawijn, WWS Kum, HFJ Savelkoul, AW Chow*

*Bijbehorende auteur voor dit werk

Onderzoeksoutputpeer review

29 Citaten (Scopus)


Staphylococcal superantigens (sAgs) including toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 (TSST-1) and related enterotoxins are exoproteins with unique immunobiological properties, They bind to major histocompatibility complex (MH-IC) class II molecules of antigen-presenting cells outside the peptide groove, and induce massive proliferation of T cells bearing specific V beta determinants. This tri-molecular interaction leads to uncontrolled release of various proinflammatory cytokines especially interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma) and tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha), the key cytokines causing sAg-mediated shock, The effector T cells involved in this hyper-immune response are predominantly of the T helper-1 (Th1) phenotype, There is also some evidence that polarization to a Th2 response with the production of classical anti-inflammatory cytokines (such as interleukins IL-4 and IL-6) also occurs. Moreover, the emergence of a novel regulatory T cell (Tr1) subset, producing mainly IL-10 but little or no IL-2 and IL-4, has recently been described following repeated sAg stimulation.

In this review, the current knowledge regarding the regulation of T helper cell subsets in response to staphylacoccal sAgs is critically evaluated, and the role of various cytokines which directly influence T cell differentiation and polarization is summarized, Particular emphasis is directed towards pro-inflammatory as well as antiinflammatory and regulatory effector functions during toxic shock. Based on this-review, we propose that a delayed production of IL-10 by Tr1 cells may be the most prominent driving force in the down-regulation of the Th1 hyper-immune response, and the critical determinant for the eventual recovery of the host.

Originele taal-2English
Pagina's (van-tot)210 - 222
Aantal pagina's13
TijdschriftEuropean cytokine network
Nummer van het tijdschrift2
StatusPublished - 2001

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