IL-17-producing γδ T cells enhance bone regeneration

Nat Commun. 2016 Mar 11:7:10928. doi: 10.1038/ncomms10928.


Immune responses are crucial not only for host defence against pathogens but also for tissue maintenance and repair after injury. Lymphocytes are involved in the healing process after tissue injury, including bone fracture and muscle damage. However, the specific immune cell subsets and mediators of healing are not entirely clear. Here we show that γδ T cells produce IL-17A, which promotes bone formation and facilitates bone fracture healing. Repair is impaired in IL-17A-deficient mice due to a defect in osteoblastic bone formation. IL-17A accelerates bone formation by stimulating the proliferation and osteoblastic differentiation of mesenchymal progenitor cells. This study identifies a novel role for IL-17-producing γδ T cells in skeletal tissue regeneration.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bone Regeneration / immunology*
  • Cell Differentiation / drug effects
  • Cell Differentiation / immunology
  • Femoral Fractures / immunology*
  • Femur / diagnostic imaging
  • Femur / immunology*
  • Femur / injuries
  • Femur / pathology
  • Flow Cytometry
  • Fracture Healing / immunology*
  • Interleukin-17 / genetics
  • Interleukin-17 / immunology*
  • Interleukin-17 / pharmacology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Osteoblasts / drug effects
  • Osteogenesis / immunology*
  • Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell, gamma-delta / genetics
  • Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell, gamma-delta / immunology
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • X-Ray Microtomography


  • Il17a protein, mouse
  • Interleukin-17
  • Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell, gamma-delta