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On How Fas Apoptosis-Independent Pathways Drive T Cell Hyperproliferation and Lymphadenopathy in lpr Mice

AuthorsBalomenos, Dimitrios ; Shokri, Rahman; Daszkiewicz, Lidia; Vázquez-Mateo, Cristina; Martínez-A, Carlos
Memory T cells
Double-negative T cells
Lupus autoimmunity
Alternative functions
Issue DateMar-2017
PublisherFrontiers Media
CitationFrontiers in immunology 8: 237 (2017)
AbstractFas induces massive apoptosis in T cells after repeated in vitro T cell receptor (TCR) stimulation and is critical for lymphocyte homeostasis in Fas-deficient (lpr) mice. Although the in vitro Fas apoptotic mechanism has been defined, there is a large conceptual gap between this in vitro phenomenon and the pathway that leads to in vivo development of lymphadenopathy and autoimmunity. A striking abnormality in lpr mice is the excessive proliferation of CD4+ and CD8+ T cells, and more so of the double-negative TCR+CD4−CD8−B220+ T cells. The basis of lpr T cell hyperproliferation remains elusive, as it cannot be explained by Fas-deficient apoptosis. T cell-directed p21 overexpression reduces hyperactivation/hyperproliferation of all lpr T cell subtypes and lymphadenopathy in lpr mice. p21 controls expansion of repeatedly stimulated T cells without affecting apoptosis. These results confirm a direct link between hyperactivation/hyperproliferation, autoreactivity, and lymphadenopathy in lpr mice and, with earlier studies, suggest that Fas apoptosis-independent pathways control lpr T cell hyperproliferation. lpr T cell hyperproliferation could be an indirect result of the defective apoptosis of repeatedly stimulated lpr T cells. Nonetheless, in this perspective, we argue for an alternative setting, in which lack of Fas would directly cause lpr T cell hyperactivation/hyperproliferation in vivo. We propose that Fas/Fas ligand (FasL) acts as an activation inhibitor of recurrently stimulated T cells, and that its disruption causes overexpansion of T cells in lpr mice. Research to define the underlying mechanism of this Fas/FasL effect could resolve the phenotype of lpr mice and lead to therapeutics for related human syndromes.
DescriptionThis Document is Protected by copyright and was first published by Frontiers. All rights reserved. it is reproduced with permission.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2017.00237
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