Regulatory T cells control diabetes without compromising acute anti-viral defense

Carmen Baca Jones, Philippe P. Pagni, Georgia Fousteri, Sowbarnika Sachithanantham, Amy Dave, Teresa Rodriguez-Calvo, Jacqueline Miller, Matthias Von Herrath

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


While previous reports have demonstrated the efficacy of regulatory T cell therapy in the prevention of diabetes, systemic immunocompromise and Treg instability remain key safety concerns. Here we examined the influence of induced Treg (iTreg) cell therapy on anti-viral host defense and autoimmune T cell responses during acute viral infection in a murine model of autoimmune diabetes. Protective transfers of iTregs maintained IL-10 expression, expanded in vivo and controlled diabetes, despite losing FoxP3 expression. Adoptive transfer of iTregs affected neither the primary anti-viral CD8 T cell response nor viral clearance, although a significant and sustained suppression of CD4 T cell responses was observed. Following acute viral clearance, iTregs transferred early suppressed both CD4 and CD8 T cell responses, which resulted in the reversion of diabetes. These observations indicate that iTregs suppress local autoimmune processes while preserving the immunocompetent host's ability to combat acute viral infection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)298-307
Number of pages10
JournalClinical Immunology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • Diabetes;
  • Regulatory T cells;
  • Safety;
  • Stability;
  • Therapy
  • Viral infection;

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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