T regulatory cells: a promising new target in atherosclerosis

Crit Rev Immunol. 2014;34(5):389-97. doi: 10.1615/critrevimmunol.2014010802.


T regulatory cells (Tregs) comprise the cardinal mechanism of peripheral immune tolerance by modulating the function of virtually each immune cell. Given that atherosclerosis is a chronic inflammation of the arterial wall, certain components of the immune system have been proven to have a central role in its pathogenesis. Consequently, various clinical and experimental studies have been conducted to elucidate the role of Tregs in suppressing this immune-mediated inflammation. In this review, current experimental and clinical knowledge on the role of Tregs in the atherogenic process is presented after a short introduction to their generation and function. Based on these data, Treg-targeted therapeutic approaches are discussed in regard to their potential for clinical application.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Arteries / immunology
  • Atherosclerosis / immunology*
  • Atherosclerosis / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Immunosuppression Therapy
  • Inflammation / immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / immunology*