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Regulatory T Cells to Limit Damage Caused to the Spinal Cord Due to Autoimmune Diseases, Study Suggests

Jan, 2021

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According to a new study led by the researchers of University of California, have reported to discover the mechanism of how regulatory T cells (Treg) play an vital role in restraining the damage caused to the spinal cord due to autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis (MS). The study highlights about how Treg cells avert autoimmunity and diminish the immune responses, especially the negative effects of type 17 helper T cells (Th17) that augments the progression of several autoimmune diseases. In this study, researchers identified pathogenic Th17 cells and their function in the advancement of several autoimmune diseases, and exhibited how the inhibition of Th17 cells by Treg cells aided in partial recovery from paralysis.

Shivashankar Othy lead author stated, “We discovered a unique 'repetitive scanning motility' by which Treg cells (the good guys) dampen calcium signaling in pathogenic Th17 cells (the bad guys), and help to resolve neuroinflammation and limit reactivation of Th17 cells in the spinal cord.”

Researchers also suggested that interaction of Th17 and Treg cell, their motility characteristics, and intracellular signaling, are aiding in providing new insights into the pathophysiology of multiple sclerosis. Researchers also suggest that these finding in exemplifying how a regulatory T cell-based immunotherapy may be influential in restraining demyelination in MS and can aid further in developing novel therapies.

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