Intestinal regulatory t cells

Vanessa R. Figliuolo da Paz, Deepa R. Jamwal, Pawel R. Kiela

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

8 Scopus citations


Mucosal surfaces are distinctive sites exposed to environmental, dietary, and microbial antigens. Particularly in the gut, the host continuously actively adapts via complex interactions between the microbiota and dietary compounds and immune and other tissue cells. Regulatory T cells (Tregs) are critical for tuning the intestinal immune response to self- and non-self-antigens in the intestine. Its importance in intestinal homeostasis is illustrated by the onset of overt inflammation caused by deficiency in Treg generation, function, or stability in the gut. A substantial imbalance in Tregs has been observed in intestinal tissue during pathogenic conditions, when a tightly regulated and equilibrated system becomes dysregulated and leads to unimpeded and chronic immune responses. In this chapter, we compile and critically discuss the current knowledge on the key factors that promote Treg-mediated tolerance in the gut, such as those involved in intestinal Treg differentiation, specificity and suppressive function, and their immunophenotype during health and disease. We also discuss the current state of knowledge on Treg dysregulation in human intestine during pathological states such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), graft-versus-host disease (GVHD), and colorectal cancer (CRC), and how that knowledge is guiding development of Treg-targeted therapies to treat or prevent intestinal disorders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAdvances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
Number of pages50
StatePublished - 2021

Publication series

NameAdvances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
ISSN (Print)0065-2598
ISSN (Electronic)2214-8019


  • Immune tolerance
  • Immunotherapy
  • Inflammation
  • Microbiota
  • Treg

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


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