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Dec 2006 Medecine sciences : M/S

[Lymphocyte coreceptors].


Olive D


The activation of the immune system is tightly regulated by positive and negative receptors that allow the fine tuning of the immune cells. This regulation relies on receptors that were initially described in T lymphocytes, but have now been identified on cells from both innate and acquired immunity. The co-stimulatory receptors can allow cell activation or amplify it, regulate cell suvival and determine their effector functions. The co-inhibitory receptors can either prevent, decrease of inhibit the activation and differentiation process. The co-stimulatory and co-inhibitory molecules belong mainly to the so-called Ig superfamily and historically were called . The members of the tumor necrosis factor receptor (TNFR) family devoid of intra-cytoplasmic death domain but binding TNF receptor associated factors (TRAF) are also important but are up to now mainly co-stimulatory. The prototypical co-stimulatory molecules belonging to CD28 family are CD28 and ICOS, whereas the co-inhibitory molecules identified so far are CTLA-4, PD-1 and BTLA. Their receptors belong in most instances to the B7 family. For instance, B7.1/CD80 and B7.2/CD86 interact both with CD28 and CTLA-4 ; PDL1 and PDL2 bind to PD-1. The exception being so far BTLA which interacts with the TNFR family member HVEM (Herpes virus entry mediator). Three other B7 family members B7-H3, B7-H4 and BT3.1 are orphan receptors until now. The basis of co-inhibition rely on distinct mechanisms, one that has been postulated being the ability of the intracytoplasmic domain of PD-1 and BTLA to bind to the protein tyrosine phosphatases SHP-1 and SHP-2. The pathways used by the co-stimulatory receptors are also not completely understood and rely for CD28 both on signal similar to the one elicited by TcR and consequently increasing the overall signal and other more specific, elicited by the activation of PI3-OH kinase, vav1 and rearrangement of cytoskeleton. Recently, reverse signaling has been described for B7 family members which further increases the spectrum of functions elicited by these families. Co-stimulation and co-inhibition are among the most promising molecules and pathways to be targeted by mAbs, recombinant proteins and drugs in auto-immune diseases, transplantation and cancer.

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