Therapeutic Potential of Regulatory T cells in Autoimmune Disorders

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Abstract

Regulatory T cells (Tregs) play a dominant role in the regulation of immune responses. Quantitative and/or qualitative abnormalities of Tregs were observed in patients with autoimmune diseases and therapeutic interventions focusing Tregs are an attractive new target with the potential to cure these disorders. Biological agents approved for treatment of inflammatory rheumatic diseases transiently influence Treg prevalences and function and experimental therapies including novel biological agents, gene therapy, activation and ex vivo expansion of purified Tregs as well as substances influencing tolerogenic dendritic cells will be developed for selective Treg therapy. Although many of these interventions are effective in vitro, in animal models as well as in early clinical trials, significant concerns exist regarding the stability of Treg modifications as well as the long-term safety of Treg-based therapies.

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