T regulatory cells in contact hypersensitivity

Curr Opin Allergy Clin Immunol. 2008 Aug;8(4):294-8. doi: 10.1097/ACI.0b013e3283079ea4.


Purpose of review: The review summarizes the recent investigations focused on T regulatory cells in hapten diseases.

Recent findings: Multiple mechanisms ensure tolerance to small chemicals penetrating the skin. Among these, specific T regulatory cells play a major role in controlling harmful immune responses to environmental antigens. Most of the T regulatory cells involved in this process belongs to the CD4 subset and suppress hapten-specific immune response through the release of IL-10 and through direct interaction with effector T cells, blocking their function.

Summary: Methods for in-vitro and in-vivo expansion of specific T regulatory cells may represent an innovative approach for the cure of contact hypersensitivity.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Dermatitis, Contact / immunology*
  • Dermatitis, Contact / therapy
  • Disease Models, Animal*
  • Environmental Exposure / adverse effects
  • Haptens / adverse effects
  • Haptens / drug effects
  • Haptens / immunology*
  • Haptens / radiation effects
  • Humans
  • Immunotherapy, Adoptive / trends
  • Interleukin-10 / metabolism
  • Langerhans Cells / cytology
  • Langerhans Cells / immunology
  • Mice
  • Self Tolerance / drug effects
  • Self Tolerance / immunology*
  • Self Tolerance / radiation effects
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / cytology*
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / metabolism


  • Haptens
  • Interleukin-10