CD200Rhigh neutrophils with dysfunctional autophagy establish systemic immunosuppression by increasing regulatory T cells

Cell Mol Immunol. 2024 Apr;21(4):349-361. doi: 10.1038/s41423-024-01136-y. Epub 2024 Feb 5.


Distinct neutrophil populations arise during certain pathological conditions. The generation of dysfunctional neutrophils during sepsis and their contribution to septicemia-related systemic immune suppression remain unclear. In this study, using an experimental sepsis model that features immunosuppression, we identified a novel population of pathogenic CD200Rhigh neutrophils that are generated during the initial stages of sepsis and contribute to systemic immune suppression by enhancing regulatory T (Treg) cells. Compared to their CD200Rlow counterparts, sepsis-generated CD200Rhigh neutrophils exhibit impaired autophagy and dysfunction, with reduced chemotactic migration, superoxide anion production, and TNF-α production. Increased soluble CD200 blocks autophagy and neutrophil maturation in the bone marrow during experimental sepsis, and recombinant CD200 treatment in vitro can induce neutrophil dysfunction similar to that observed in CD200Rhigh neutrophils. The administration of an α-CD200R antibody effectively reversed neutrophil dysfunction by enhancing autophagy and protecting against a secondary infection challenge, leading to increased survival. Transcriptome analysis revealed that CD200Rhigh neutrophils expressed high levels of Igf1, which elicits the generation of Treg cells, while the administration of an α-CD200R antibody inhibited Treg cell generation in a secondary infection model. Taken together, our findings revealed a novel CD200Rhigh neutrophil population that mediates the pathogenesis of sepsis-induced systemic immunosuppression by generating Treg cells.

Keywords: Autophagy; CD200R; IGF-1; Neutrophils; Regulatory T cells; Sepsis.

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies
  • Autophagy
  • Coinfection*
  • Humans
  • Immunosuppression Therapy
  • Neutrophils
  • Sepsis*
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory


  • Antibodies