Innate-like T cells in children with sickle cell disease

Abstract : BACKGROUND: The implication of lymphocytes in sickle cell disease pathogenesis is supported by a number of recent reports. These studies provided evidence for the activation of invariant natural killer T (iNKT) cells in adult patients, but did not investigate the involvement of other innate-like T cell subsets so far. METHODS: Here we present a monocentric prospective observational study evaluating the number and functional properties of both circulating conventional and innate-like T cells, namely iNKT, Mucosal-Associated Invariant T (MAIT) and gammadelta (γδ) T cells in a cohort of 39 children with sickle cell disease. RESULTS: Relative to age-matched healthy controls, we found that patients had a higher frequency of IL-13- and IL-17-producing CD4+ T cells, as well as higher MAIT cell counts with an increased frequency of IL-17-producing MAIT cells. Patients also presented increased Vδ2 γδ T cell counts, especially during vaso-occlusive crisis, and a lower frequency of IFNγ-producing Vδ2 γδ T cells, except during crisis. iNKT cell counts and the frequency of IFNγ-producing iNKT cells were unchanged compared to controls. Our study revealed positive correlations between 1) the frequency of IFNγ-producing CD4+, CD8+ and Vδ2 γδ T cells and the number of hospitalizations for vaso-occlusive crisis in the previous year; 2) the frequency of IFNγ-producing iNKT cells and patients' age and 3) the frequency of IL-17-producing Vδ2 γδ T cells and hemoglobin S level. CONCLUSION: These results strongly suggest a role of innate-like T cells in sickle cell disease pathophysiology, especially that of IL-17-producing MAIT and γδ T cells.
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Submitted on : Thursday, July 11, 2019 - 1:15:42 PM
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Slimane Allali, Céline Dietrich, François Machavoine, Rachel Rignault-Bricard, Valentine Brousse, et al.. Innate-like T cells in children with sickle cell disease. PLoS ONE, Public Library of Science, 2019, 14 (6), pp.e0219047. ⟨10.1371/journal.pone.0219047⟩. ⟨inserm-02180285⟩

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