Th17 immune response in IBD: A new pathogenic mechanism

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Abstract

Although traditionally associated with exaggerated Th1 or Th2 cell response, the gut inflammation occurring in patients with IBD is also characterized by production of cytokines made by a distinct lineage of T helper cells, termed Th17 cells. The discovery that this new inflammatory T-cell subset drives immune-mediated pathology and that the antigen-presenting cell-derived IL-23 is necessary for amplifying Th17 cell-associated inflammation has contributed to elucidate new pathways of intestinal tissue damage as well as to open new avenues for development of therapeutic strategies in IBD.

In this review, we discuss the available data regarding the involvement of Th17 cells and their interplay with other mucosal cell types in the modulation of intestinal tissue inflammation.

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