Regulatory T cells

J Invest Dermatol. 2006 Jan;126(1):15-24. doi: 10.1038/sj.jid.5700004.


Immunologic self-tolerance is critically dependent on the induction but also on the downregulation of immune responses. Though ignored and neglected for many years, suppressor T cells, now renamed regulatory T cells (Tregs), play an important role in the negative regulation of immune responses. Several subsets of Tregs have been described. Naturally occurring CD4(+)CD25(+) Tregs are important in the prevention of autoimmune diseases. Type 1 Tregs, another subtype of Treg that is inducible, exert their suppressive activity primarily via the release of IL-10. Detailed knowledge about the phenotype and mode of action of these cells will significantly increase our understanding of the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases and will also help to identify new therapeutic strategies.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Autoimmune Diseases / immunology
  • Autoimmune Diseases / therapy*
  • CD4 Antigens / analysis*
  • Homeostasis
  • Humans
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2 / analysis*
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / immunology*
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / radiation effects
  • Ultraviolet Rays


  • CD4 Antigens
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2