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Gamma-delta T cells play a protective role during infection with Nippostrongylus brasiliensis by promoting goblet cell function in the small intestine

Gamma-delta T cells play a protective role during infection with Nippostrongylus brasiliensis by promoting goblet cell function in the small intestine

The intestinal epithelium is rich in ?? T cells and the gut is a site of residence for a wide variety of pathogens, including nematodes. Although CD4+ TCR??+ Th2-type T cells are essential for the expulsion of intestinal nematodes, very little information is available on the function of ?? T cells in this type of infection. Here, we demonstrate two major functions of ?? T cells as a potently protective T cell population against Nippostrongylus brasiliensis (N. brasiliensis) infection using ?? T cell-deficient (TCR?-/-) mice. First, ?? T cells are required to initiate rapid expulsion of adult worms from the intestine and to limit egg production. Secondly, ?? T cells prevent the pathological intestinal damage associated with nematode infection, evident by increased clinical disease and more severe microscopic lesions in infected TCR?-/- mice. ?? T cell deficiency led to delayed goblet cell hyperplasia in association with reduced expression of phosphorylated STAT6, MUC2, Trefoil factor-3 (TFF3) and Th2-type cytokines including IL-13. TCR?-/- mice also produced more IFN-? than wild-type mice. Within the intraepithelial lymphocyte compartment, ?? T cells produced IL-13. Adoptive transfer of ?? T cells or administration of recombinant IL-13 to TCR?-/- mice successfully reduced the egg production by N. brasiliensis. Collectively, these data provide strong evidence that ?? T cells play an important role in controlling infection with intestinal nematodes and limiting infection-induced pathology.

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Accession: 036194156

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DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2567.2011.03503.x

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