Regulation of Immune Balance by Thymosin: Potential Role in the Development of Suppressor T-Cells
Although the mechanism of action of thymosin has yet to be definitively established, it is clear that thymosin can activate immature lymphoid cells and induce their differentiation into immunologically competent T-lymphocytes in vitro and in vivo (1–5). It appears that one subpopulation of T-cells, the so-called “suppressor” or “regulator” T-cells, may be dependent upon thymosin for their differentiation and perhaps maintenance as a cell population (2,3). In this paper we review the results of animal and clinical experimentation which support the hypothesis that an imbalance in thymosin production and/or secretion may be part of the pathological mechanisms in certain autoimmune diseases.This deficiency is thought to lead to inadequate production of subpopulations of T-cells, such as the suppressor or regulator cells which appear to exert, in as yet an undefined manner, fine control over the immune system.
KeywordsSystemic Lupus Erythematosus Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia Ataxia Telangiectasia Null Cell Primary Immunodeficiency Disease
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