9th Annual BMRP Investigator Meeting - Abstract

Helminthic Induction of Innate and Adaptive Immune Regulatory Circuitry to Control IBD

Long Hang1, Tommy Setiawan1, Arthur M. Blum1, Joseph Urban2, Korynn Stoyanoff1 and Joel V. Weinstock1,a

1Division of Gastroenterology-Hepatology, Department of Internal Medicine, Tufts Medical Center (Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.A.); 2Diet, Genomics, and Immunology Laboratory, Beltsville Human Nutrition Research Center, Agricultural Research Service, United States Department of Agriculture (Beltsville, Maryland, U.S.A.)

Helminths are worm-like organisms some of whom can inhabit the GI tract and modulate mucosal immune responses apparently through induction of immune regulatory circuits in the host. In murine IBD, H. polygyrus (Hp) inhabits the duodenum and can both prevent colitis as well as reverse ongoing disease. Using Foxp3/IL10 double reporter mice, we showed that Hp infection induces expansion of at least two distinct Foxp3+ regulatory T cell subsets in the colon and terminal ileum. These subsets have distinct regulatory properties and have the potential to control disease. However, Hp exposure also induces subsets of non-T cells with strong regulatory activity. It appears that helminth exposure induces several important immune regulatory pathways that can protect the intestinal mucosa, which will be discussed.

a Principal Investigator

Last updated 05/11/2011