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ASSA13-03-42 The Role of CD4+CD25+ Regulatory T Cells in Macrophage-Derived Foam-Cell Formation
  1. Jing Lin,
  2. Ming Li,
  3. Shaolin He,
  4. Xuming Ma,
  5. Dazhu Li
  1. Department of Cardiology, Institute of Cardiovascular Diseases, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science & Technology, Wuhan, China


Background and Objective Cluster of differentiation (CD)4+ CD25+ regulatory T cells (Tregs) exert a suppressive activity on atherosclerosis, but the underlying mechanism remains unclear. Here, we investigated whether and how Tregs affect macrophages foam-cell formation.

Methods and Results Tregs were isolated by magnetic cell sorting-column and analysed by fl ow cytometry. Macrophages were cultured with or without Tregs in the presence of oxidised LDL (oxLDL) for 48 h to transform foam cells. After co-culture with Tregs, macrophages showed a decrease in lipid accumulation, which was accompanied by a significantly downregulated expression of CD36 and SRA but no obvious difference in ABCA1 expression.

Conclusions Tregs can inhibit the proinflammatory properties of macrophages and steer macrophage differentiation toward an anti-infl amatory cytokine producing phenotype. Mechanistic studies reveal that both cell-to-cell contact and soluble factors are required for Treg-mediated suppression on macrophage foam-cell formation. Cytokines, interleukin-10 (IL-10), and transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-beta) are the key factors for these suppressive functions.

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