CD4+ CD25+ Regulatory T Cells Control the Magnitude of T-dependent Humoral Immune Responses to Exogenous Antigens

Eur J Immunol. 2006 Apr;36(4):855-63. doi: 10.1002/eji.200535500.


CD4+ CD25+ T reg cells are critical for peripheral tolerance and prevention of autoimmunity. Here we show that CD4+ CD25+ T reg also regulate the magnitude of humoral responses against a panel of T-dependent antigens of foreign origin during both primary and secondary immune responses. Depletion of CD4+ CD25+ T cells leads to increased antigen-specific antibody production and affinity maturation but does not affect T-independent B cell responses, suggesting that CD4+ CD25+ T reg exert a feedback mechanism on non-self antigen-specific antibody secretion by dampening the T cell help for B cell activation. Moreover, we show that CD4+ CD25+ T reg also suppress in vitro B cell immunoglobulin production by inhibiting CD4+ CD25- T cell help delivery, and that blockade of TGF-beta activity abolishes this suppression.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibody Formation / immunology*
  • Antigens / immunology*
  • B-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • CD4 Antigens / immunology
  • CD4 Antigens / metabolism
  • Cells, Cultured
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Lymphocyte Activation / immunology*
  • Lymphocyte Depletion
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2 / immunology
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2 / metabolism
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / immunology*


  • Antigens
  • CD4 Antigens
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2