报告题目：Tuning T cell responses.
报告人：Dr. Avery August
Professor and Chair
Department of Microbiology and Immunology
College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University
The August laboratory is interested in signals that regulate the choices that immune cells make in deciding to respond in an inflammatory or suppressive manner. We study these signals in the context of allergy and lung inflammation, using mouse genetic models and human cells. Specifically, we study a family of tyrosine kinases expressed by immune cells, the Tec family kinases, that regulate immune cell activation. Although these kinases are expressed in different immune cells such as T and B cells, and mast cells, their response to extracellular stimuli are different. Using mouse genetic models, we have found that the major Tec kinase expressed in T cells, Itk, positively regulates the differentiation of CD4+ T cells (Th2, Th17), or suppressor (Tr1 cells), but negatively regulates the development of Foxp3+Treg cells. This tuning of T cell differentiation by Itk controls whether the immune response is inflammatory (such as in lung inflammation or allergy), or suppressive (such as the production of IL10 by Tr1 cells). In CD8+ T cells, we have shown that Itk is a negative regulator of different memory populations, including innate memory and antigen-induced memory CD8+ T cells. Our work suggest that Itk is a critical node in tuning the T cell response towards inflammation or suppression.