Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

BACKGROUND: Intravenous immunoglobulins (IVIg) therapy is effective as a treatment for T-cell-mediated immune diseases, but whether and how IVIg suppress allogeneic T-cell responses is largely unknown. METHODS: In vitro, human CD4(+), CD4(+)CD25(-), or CD4(+)CD25(+) T cells were stimulated with allogeneic antigen-presenting cells (APCs), and mouse CBA/Ca (H2(k)) CD4(+) or CD4(+)CD25(-) T cells were stimulated with C57BL/10 (H2(b)) splenocytes, in the presence or absence of IVIg. Proliferation, binding of IVIg, expression of activation markers, and ZAP70-phosphorylation were determined. In vivo, 1x10(5) CD4(+) or CD4(+)CD25(-) T cells of CBA/Ca mice were adoptively transferred into CBA/RAG1(-/-) mice, which were 1 day later transplanted with skin grafts of C57BL/10 mice. IVIg was administered intravenously and skin graft survival was determined. RESULTS: IVIg bound to the surface of human and mouse CD4(+)Foxp3(+) regulatory T cells (Tregs). IVIg binding resulted in functional activation of Tregs, as detected by increased expression of surface activation markers, enhanced ZAP70-phosphorylation, and increased capacity to suppress allogeneic T-cell proliferation. IVIg inhibited allogeneic T-cell proliferation in the presence of Tregs, but this effect was abrogated on selective depletion of CD25(+) cells from responder T cells. IVIg prevented T-cell-mediated rejection of fully mismatched skin grafts in CBA/RAG1(-/-) mice reconstituted with CD4(+) T cells, but this effect was lost on selective depletion of CD4(+)CD25(+) cells from transferred T cells, indicating that IVIg induced dominant allograft protection mediated by Tregs. CONCLUSIONS: Our data show that IVIg suppress allogeneic T-cell responses by direct activation of Tregs. IVIg treatment, which has been proven safe, may have therapeutic potential in tolerance-inducing strategies in transplant medicine.

Original publication




Journal article



Publication Date





1446 - 1455


Animals, CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes, Flow Cytometry, Forkhead Transcription Factors, Graft Survival, Humans, Immunoglobulins, Intravenous, Interleukin-2 Receptor alpha Subunit, Mice, Mice, Inbred C57BL, Mice, Inbred CBA, Mice, Knockout, Models, Biological, Skin Transplantation, T-Lymphocytes