CD4+CD25+ T cells regulate colonic localization of CD4 T cells reactive to a microbial antigen

Inflamm Bowel Dis. 2005 Jun;11(6):541-50. doi: 10.1097/01.mib.0000163696.26969.e4.


Background: In patients with inflammatory bowel diseases, T-cell activation driven by microflora has been implicated as a mechanism causing clonal expansion and infiltration of CD4+ T cells in colonic lamina propria (LP). We explored a regulatory mechanism preventing infiltration of CD4+ T cells specific to a microbe-associated antigen in the gut.

Methods: SCID mice were reconstituted with CD4+ T cells specific to ovalbumin (OVA) and were orally administered with Escherichia coli engineered to produce OVA.

Results: OVA-specific CD4+ T cells (KJ1-26+) were recruited to colonic LP in an Ag-dependent manner, which was inhibited by adoptive transfer of naturally occurring CD4+CD25+ T (Treg) cells. KJ1-26+ T cells and Treg cells are localized preferentially to the colonic follicles that contain dendritic cells. In mice given Treg cells, LP CD4+ T cells showed a decrease in proliferative and interferon gamma response and an increase in transforming growth factor beta1 response to OVA stimulation. Treg cells inhibited both antigenic activation of effector CD4+ T cells and class II/CD80/CD86 up-regulation of dendritic cells.

Conclusion: : Treg cells suppress recruitment of CD4+ T cells specific to a microbe-associated antigen to LP, which was associated with colocalization of effector CD4+ T cells and Treg cells in colonic follicles.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antigens, Bacterial / immunology
  • CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • Cell Movement
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Colitis / immunology*
  • Colitis / veterinary
  • Colon / cytology
  • Colon / immunology*
  • Colon / microbiology*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Flow Cytometry
  • Interferon-gamma / biosynthesis
  • Lymphocyte Activation
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Mice, SCID
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2 / immunology*


  • Antigens, Bacterial
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2
  • Interferon-gamma