International Mammalian Genome Society

17th International Mouse Genome Conference

9-12 November 2003, Braunschweig, Germany


Hansen W
German Research Centre for Biotechnology

Co-Authors: 1) Bruder D, 2) Probst-Kepper M, 1) Westendorf A 1) Geffers R 3) von Boehmer H 1) Buer J
Institutions: 1) German Research Centre for Biotechnology, 2) Hannover Medical School 3) Harvard Medical School

Regulatory CD4+CD25+ T cells (TR) control immune responsiveness to self- and alloantigens. Isolation and therapeutic manipulation of regulatory T cells requires the use of reliable surface receptors being selectively up-regulated in TR cells. Here, we report a comparative expression profiling of polyclonal CD4+CD25 + TR cells from wild type mice and monospecific CD4+ TR obtained from hemagglutinin (HA)-specific T-cell-receptor transgenic mice (TCR-HA) crossed to mice expressing HA under control of the Igκ promotor (Ig-HA). Out of 12500 genes analyzed we identified neuropilin-1 (Nrp1) as a specific surface marker for CD4+CD25+ TR cells. Nrp1, a receptor involved in axon guidance, angiogenesis, and the activation of T cells, is constitutively expressed on CD4+CD25+ TR cells independent of their activation status. On the contrary, Nrp1 expression is lost in naïve CD4+CD25- T cells after T cell receptor stimulation. Furthermore, CD4+Nrp1high T cells express high levels of Foxp3 and confer suppressor function on CD4+CD25- T cells. Thus, Nrp1 represents the first surface marker to distinguish regulatory T cells from both naïve and recently activated CD4+CD25+ non-regulatory T cells.

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