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Stimulation of Human CD4+ T Lymphocytes via TLR3, TLR5 and TLR7/8 Up-Regulates Expression of Costimulatory and Modulates Proliferation

By Rita Simone, Antonio Floriani and Daniele Saverino


The cells of innate and adaptive immunity, although activated by different ligands, engage in cross talk to ensure a successful immune outcome. Toll-like receptors (TLRs) are key components of the innate immune system and have the ability to detect microbial infection and trigger host defence responses. Otherwise, human T lymphocytes are able to produce most TLRs. Thus, we analyze the capability of some TLR ligands to modulate the function of highly-purified CD4+ T cells. We found that agents acting via TLRs (poly I:C, a TLR3 ligand; flagellin, a TLR5 ligand; and R848, a TLR7/8 ligand) are able to regulate the expression of costimulatory molecules both on purified antigen presenting cells and on purified T lymphocytes. Moreover, the activation mediated by TLRs determines a kinetic expression of B7-family members such as through an inhibition of T lymphocytes delayed proliferation. These findings suggest a functional role of some invading microorganisms in regulating acquired immunity

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