Decreased Levels of Circulating CD4+CD25+Foxp3+ Regulatory T Cells in Patients with Primary Antiphospholipid Syndrome
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CD4+CD25+Foxp3+ regulatory T (Treg) cell dysfunction has been documented in various autoimmune disorders, but not in antiphospholipid syndrome (APS) so far.
In this cross-sectional study, we aim to investigate CD4+CD25+Foxp3+ Treg cells, CD3+CD19− T cells and CD3−CD19+ B cells in patients with primary APS and healthy controls. Cell subtypes were immunophenotyped using specific monoclonal antibodies (anti-CD3 CY5, anti-CD4 FITC, anti-CD25, anti-Foxp3, anti-CD19 PE) and flow cytometry.
Twenty patients with APS and 20 age- and sex-matched controls were studied. The percentage of total lymphocytes, activated Th cells (CD4+CD25+), Treg cells and CD3−CD19+ B cells were found significantly lower in APS patients as compared to controls (all p < 0.05).
A dysfunction in CD4+CD25+Foxp3+ Treg cells may represent one of the mechanisms leading to autoimmunity in APS patients. The decreased number of CD3−CD19+ B cells of APS patients warrants further elucidation.
KeywordsAntiphospholipid syndrome CD4+CD25+Foxp3+ Treg cells CD3−CD19+ B cells autoimmunity
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