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Yiping Jin, Sunil K. Chauhan, Daniel R. Saban, Reza Dana; Role of CCR7 in Facilitating Direct Allosensitization and Regulatory T-Cell Function in High-Risk Corneal Transplantation. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2010;51(2):816-821. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/iovs.09-3952.
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Chemokine receptor 7 (CCR7) is a key homing molecule for immune cell trafficking, including corneal antigen-presenting cell (APC) migration from the inflamed cornea to draining lymph nodes (LNs). Here, the authors investigated the effect of CCR7-facilitated donor APC trafficking on allosensitization, regulatory T-cell (Treg) function, and graft survival in corneal transplantation.
CCR7−/− or wild-type (WT) allogeneic corneal grafts were transplanted onto the neovascularized high-risk recipient beds. Two weeks later, the frequency of directly alloprimed host T cells was measured by the IFN-γ ELISPOT assay. Treg function was tested by a coculture suppression assay and an IFN-γ ELISPOT assay. Kaplan-Meier analysis was performed to evaluate graft survival.
The recipients of CCR7−/− grafts had fewer migrated donor APCs and lower frequency of IFN-γ–producing T cells in the draining LNs. However, there was no statistically significant difference in transplant survival between recipients of CCR7−/− and those of WT grafts. Tregs from the CCR7−/− graft recipient group showed reduced regulatory potential for the suppression of proliferation of naive T cells and direct alloprimed T cells and expressed lower Foxp3 levels. In vitro studies confirmed that mature CCR7+ major histocompatibility complex class II+ CD86+ graft-derived dendritic cells were critical for Treg function.
Not only is CCR7-mediated donor-derived APC trafficking to the draining LNs important in the initiation of host T-cell priming, it is crucial for Treg-mediated tolerance.
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