VEGFR2 is selectively expressed by FOXP3high CD4+ Treg

Eur J Immunol. 2010 Jan;40(1):197-203. doi: 10.1002/eji.200939887.


CD25+ FOXP3+CD4+ T cells (Treg) have been considered to play an important role in immune tolerance against several tumor antigens. It has also been indicated that high-level expression of FOXP3 (FOXP3high) is sufficient to confer suppressive activity to normal non-Treg. Here, we showed for the first time that vascular endothelial growth factor receptor 2 (VEGFR2) is selectively expressed by FOXP3high but not FOXP3low Treg. Such VEGFR2+ Treg exist in several tissues including PBMC and malignant effusion-derived lymphocytes. In conclusion, VEGFR2 may be a novel target for controlling Treg with highly suppressive function.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Forkhead Transcription Factors / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Immunotherapy
  • Neoplasms / immunology
  • Neoplasms / therapy
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / immunology*
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta / immunology
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Receptor-2 / immunology*


  • FOXP3 protein, human
  • Forkhead Transcription Factors
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Receptor-2