Background: The recently identified member of the TNF superfamily TL1A (TNFSF15) increases IFN-gamma production by T cells in peripheral and mucosal CCR9+ T cells. TL1A and its receptor DR3 are up-regulated during chronic intestinal inflammation in ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease (CD). TL1A gene haplotypes increase CD susceptibility in Japanese, European, and US cohorts.
Methodology and principal findings: Here we report that the presence of TL1A gene haplotype B increases risk in Jewish CD patients with antibody titers for the E. coli outer membrane porin C (OmpC+) (Haplotype B frequency in Jewish CD patients: 24.9% for OmpC negative and 41.9% for OmpC positive patients, respectively, P< or =0.001). CD14+ monocytes isolated from Jewish OmpC+ patients homozygous for TL1A gene haplotype B express higher levels of TL1A in response to FcgammaR stimulation, a known inducing pathway of TL1A, as measured by ELISA. Furthermore, the membrane expression of TL1A is increased on peripheral monocytes from Jewish but not non-Jewish CD patients with the risk haplotype.
Conclusions and significance: These findings suggest that TL1A gene variation exacerbates induction of TL1A in response to FcgammaR stimulation in Jewish CD patients and this may lead to chronic intestinal inflammation via overwhelming T cell responses. Thus, TL1A may provide an important target for therapeutic intervention in this subgroup of IBD patients.