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Thomas H. Dohlman, Shilpa Kodati, Jing Hua, Yihe Chen, Sunil K. Chauhan, Reza Dana; Th17 Cell-associated Chemokine Receptor and Ligand Expression in Dry Eye Disease. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2012;53(14):2322.
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Th17 cells have been reported to be the predominate effector T cell in dry eye disease (DED). The purpose of this study was to investigate the chemokine receptor-ligand system in DED, which may be involved in Th17 cell homing to the ocular surface in this disorder.
8-10 week old female C57BL/6 mice were housed in a low humidity controlled environment chamber for 12 days to induce DED. Expression of the Th17 associated chemokine receptors CCR2 and CCR6 was determined by flow cytometric analysis of Th17 (CD4+IL-17+) cells collected from the draining lymph nodes (LN). Conjunctival samples were analyzed via real time PCR to determine expression of the chemokines CCL2 and CCL20.
Analysis of the draining LN of DED mice showed a 50% increase in the frequency of CCR2-hi expressing Th17 cells and a 30% increase in CCR6 expression by all Th17 cells compared to normal mice. In addition, the conjunctiva of DED mice showed a significant 12 fold increase in CCL20 (p<0.05) expression, and a 2 fold increase in CCL2 expression compared to conjunctiva from normal mice.
Our data demonstrate increased CCR2 and CCR6 expression by Th17 cells and increased levels of corresponding chemokine ligands at the ocular surface in DED. These changes may represent a mechanism for Th17 cell migration to the ocular surface in DED.
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