Next Article in Journal
Treatment of Cells and Tissues with Chromate Maximizes Mitochondrial 2Fe2S EPR Signals
Previous Article in Journal
Proteomics in Psoriasis
Previous Article in Special Issue
CB2 Receptor Stimulation and Dexamethasone Restore the Anti-Inflammatory and Immune-Regulatory Properties of Mesenchymal Stromal Cells of Children with Immune Thrombocytopenia
Open AccessReview

Context-Dependent Effect of Glucocorticoids on the Proliferation, Differentiation, and Apoptosis of Regulatory T Cells: A Review of the Empirical Evidence and Clinical Applications

Section of Pharmacology, Department of Medicine, University of Perugia, Perugia I-06129, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(5), 1142; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20051142
Received: 21 January 2019 / Revised: 26 February 2019 / Accepted: 28 February 2019 / Published: 6 March 2019
Glucocorticoids (GCs) are widely used to treat several diseases because of their powerful anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effects on immune cells and non-lymphoid tissues. The effects of GCs on T cells are the most relevant in this regard. In this review, we analyze how GCs modulate the survival, maturation, and differentiation of regulatory T (Treg) cell subsets into both murine models and humans. In this way, GCs change the Treg cell number with an impact on the mid-term and long-term efficacy of GC treatment. In vitro studies suggest that the GC-dependent expansion of Treg cells is relevant when they are activated. In agreement with this observation, the GC treatment of patients with established autoimmune, allergic, or (auto)inflammatory diseases causes an expansion of Treg cells. An exception to this appears to be the local GC treatment of psoriatic lesions. Moreover, the effects on Treg number in patients with multiple sclerosis are uncertain. The effects of GCs on Treg cell number in healthy/diseased subjects treated with or exposed to allergens/antigens appear to be context-dependent. Considering the relevance of this effect in the maturation of the immune system (tolerogenic response to antigens), the success of vaccination (including desensitization), and the tolerance to xenografts, the findings must be considered when planning GC treatment. View Full-Text
Keywords: glucocorticoids; regulatory T (Treg) cells; peripherally derived Treg (pTreg) cells; thymus-derived Treg cells (tTreg); Treg cell number modulation; human autoimmune diseases; human allergic diseases; desensitizing treatment; tolerogenic response glucocorticoids; regulatory T (Treg) cells; peripherally derived Treg (pTreg) cells; thymus-derived Treg cells (tTreg); Treg cell number modulation; human autoimmune diseases; human allergic diseases; desensitizing treatment; tolerogenic response
Show Figures

Graphical abstract

MDPI and ACS Style

Cari, L.; De Rosa, F.; Nocentini, G.; Riccardi, C. Context-Dependent Effect of Glucocorticoids on the Proliferation, Differentiation, and Apoptosis of Regulatory T Cells: A Review of the Empirical Evidence and Clinical Applications. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20, 1142.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map

1
Back to TopTop