Endocrine

, Volume 52, Issue 1, pp 30–38 | Cite as

T regulatory (Treg) and T helper 17 (Th17) lymphocytes in thyroid autoimmunity

Mini Review

Abstract

Different immune cell subsets have a relevant role in the pathogenesis of and tissue damage seen in autoimmune thyroid diseases (AITD), including T regulatory (Treg) lymphocytes and T helper (Th) 17 cells. There are several types of CD4+ Treg cells (Foxp3+, CD69+, Tr1), which are able to prevent the appearance of autoimmune diseases, down regulating the immune response and the inflammatory phenomenon. However, despite their presence in peripheral blood and thyroid tissue from patients with AITD, these cells are apparently unable to put down the autoimmune process. Moreover, many reports indicate the involvement of Th17 cells in chronic inflammatory diseases, including AITD. Nevertheless, it is now evident that these lymphocytes show a remarkable plasticity, giving rise to anti-inflammatory (including Treg lymphocytes) and pro-inflammatory cell subtypes. Nowadays, both Treg and Th17 cells must be considered as key elements in the pathogenesis of AITD as well as plausible potential targets for the next generation of therapeutic options of this condition.

Keywords

Immune regulation T cells Autoimmune thyroid disease Cytokines 

Abbreviations

Abs

Antibodies

mAb

Monoclonal antibodies

Tfh

T follicular helper

Treg

T regulatory

Th

T helper

AITD

Autoimmune thyroid diseases

IL-

Interleukin

IFN

Interferon

TG

Thyroglobulin

TPO

Thyroperoxidase

TGF-β

Transforming growth factor-β

GO

Graves’ ophthalmopathy

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Immunology, School of MedicineUASLPSan Luis PotosíMexico
  2. 2.Center for Applied Research in Health and BiomedicineUASLPSan Luis PotosíMexico
  3. 3.Department of Endocrinology, Hospital Universitario de la Princesa, Instituto de Investigación Sanitaria PrincesaUniversidad Autónoma de MadridMadridSpain

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