Interferon-gamma- and interleukin-4-producing T cells in Down's syndrome

Neurosci Lett. 2006 Feb 27;395(1):67-70. doi: 10.1016/j.neulet.2005.10.048. Epub 2005 Nov 9.


Down's syndrome (DS) associates with genetic-dependent dysregulation of the interferon (IFN) system. We used intracellular cytokine staining to analyse the percentages of IFN-gamma- and interleukin (IL)-4-producing T cells in the peripheral blood of patients with DS, individuals with mental retardation (MR), and healthy controls (HCs). The percentages of IFN-gamma-producing CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells (IFGCs), namely Th1 (mean, 21.4+/-S.D. 1.3) and Tc1 (12.6+/-1.1), and the Th1/Th2 ratio (6.1+/-0.2) in DS were significantly higher than in MR (15.9+/-1.3, 7.9+/-0.6, 4.8+/-0.3) and in HCs (15.6+/-1.9, 7.2+/-1.1, 4.6+/-0.6). Most of the DS patients with high IFGC percentages were seropositive for anti-transglutaminase IgA. We found no correlation between sex, age, APOE genotypes, coexisting autoimmune diseases, susceptibility to infections, or degree of cognitive impairment and high IFGC percentages. This abnormality might thus contribute to immune dysfunction in DS without manifest clinical correlates.

Publication types

  • Controlled Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Down Syndrome / metabolism*
  • Down Syndrome / pathology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intellectual Disability / metabolism
  • Intellectual Disability / pathology
  • Interferon-gamma / metabolism*
  • Interleukin-4 / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • T-Lymphocytes / metabolism*


  • Interleukin-4
  • Interferon-gamma