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AB0063 Gammadelta t cells and their intracellular cytokine profile in peripheral blood of patients with systemic lupus erythematosus
  1. Z. Lu,
  2. X. Li,
  3. L. Sun
  1. The Affiliated Drum Tower Hospital of Nanjing University Medical School, Nanjing, China

Abstract

Background Gammadelta T cells represent a minor population of human peripheral blood T lymphocytes. As very rapid cytokine-producing cells, gammadelta T cells can regulate other lymphocytes activation and assist their local inflammatory function, thus are involved in some autoimmune diseases. Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a multi-organ damage autoimmune disease characterized by lymphocytes dysfunction and aberrant cytokines production.

Objectives The aim of this study was to detect gammadelta T cells numbers in the peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) and analyze their intracellular cytokines profile (IFN-γ, IL-4, IL-10, IL-17, TGF-β).

Methods Gammadelta T cells were detected in peripheral blood from 42 SLE patients and 20 normal controls by flow cytometry (FACS). Lupus disease activity was evaluated with a SLEDAI (Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Disease Activity Index) score. Active SLE was defined as SLEDAI≥8. Anniex-V/PI double-staining FACS analysis was employed to observe the proportion of the apoptotic gammadelta T cellsin 6 active SLE patients and 6 normal controls, respectively. The percentages of cytoplasmic cytokines including IFN-γ, IL-4, IL-10, IL-17 and TGF-β were examined in20 SLE patients and 10 normal controls by using FACS anlysis.

Results The percentages of gammadelta T cells were remarkably down-regulated in active SLE patients (2.96±1.84%, n=30) compared with that of inactive (5.31±3.05%, n=12) and normal controls (6.83±2.85%, n=20, both p<0.01). The absolute number of gammadelta T cells decreased significantly in active SLE patients (1.72±1.58×107/L, n=30) than that in inactive SLE (5.27±3.60×107/L, n=12, p<0.01), both lower than in normal controls (10.07±4.99 ×107/L, n=20, both p<0.01). There was increased gammadelta T cells apoptosis (17.03±8.71%, n=6) in SLE patients than in normal controls (6.67±1.18%, n=6, p<0.05). The positive rate of gammadelta T intracellular IFN-γ, IL-4, IL-10 and TGF-β production in 20 SLE patients were 33.19±20.20%, 1.04±0.93%, 1.91±0.98% and 2.20±1.97%, significantly higher than that of 10 normal controls (IFN-γ: 5.87±4.63%, IL-4:0.30±0.34%, IL-10:0.18±0.31%, TGF-β: 0.21±0.22%, all p<0.01). While there were no differences in the percentages of IL-17-positive gammadelta T cells between SLE patients (0.14±0.24%, n=20) and normal controls (0.18±0.31%, n=10).

Conclusions Gammadelta T cells are down-regulated in SLE partly due to excessive apoptosis. GammadeltaT cells secret both pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokinesin SLE microenvironment, suggesting these cells participate in both the regulation and the propagation of lupus.

Disclosure of Interest None Declared

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