T Cells in Allergic Disease

  • Catherine M. Hawrylowicz
  • Christopher Corrigan
  • Alex Faith
Part of the Allergy Frontiers book series (ALLERGY, volume 2)


The type I (CD4 + Th1, CD8 + Tc1) and type II (CD4 + Th2, CD8 + Tc2) paradigm of cytokine-secreting T cell subsets has advanced considerably in recent years. CD4 + Th2 cells have been closely associated with initiation and maintenance of allergic inflammation and new signals, such as OX40, TSLP and IL-25 that promote this lineage in disease have been identified. More recently, invariant natural killer cells (iNKT) have been proposed as a source of type II cytokines in severe disease, although debate regarding the relative importance of this cell type is ongoing. An additional CD4 + T cell subset that secretes the pro-inflammatory mediator IL-17 has been described and its role in allergic disease is under active investigation. Conversely, the importance of cells that inhibit disease-promoting adaptive immune responses has been increasingly recognised. Suppressor or regulatory T cells (Treg) play an important role in controlling immune responses in the periphery and include both naturally occurring and adaptive or inducible Treg that secrete inhibitory cytokines such as IL-10 and TGF . These cells appear important in the maintenance of health, are impaired in active allergic or asthmatic disease and appear to be induced or restored following certain successful disease therapies. Our increased understanding of T cell biology in allergic disease has provided a clearer understanding of the mechanisms of well-established and relatively successful therapies such as corticosteroids and allergen immunotherapy. This provides the impetus for the development of novel, better tolerated and better targeted immunotherapeutic interventions in allergic diseases.


Dendritic Cell Allergic Disease Allergy Clin Immunol Allergic Inflammation Allergen Immunotherapy 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Catherine M. Hawrylowicz
    • 1
  • Christopher Corrigan
    • 2
  • Alex Faith
    • 2
  1. 1.Asthma, Allergy and Respiratory ScienceKing's College LondonUK
  2. 2.MRC and Asthma UK Centre for Allergic Mechanisms in AsthmaKing's College LondonUK

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