Treating RA with regulatory T cells
Adoptively Transferring GPI-specific Regulatory T cells to treat the Effector Phase of Rheumatoid Arthritis
The immune system generates a population of cells known as regulatory T cells. These cells are the immune system’s way of controlling inflammation and preventing the development of various autoimmune diseases. Many scientists are studying regulatory T cells to learn how to use these cells to treat inflammation and autoimmunity. If regulatory T cells are to be of clinical use, they must be able to suppress inflammation when administered during later stages of an ongoing autoimmune disease.
Dr. DiPaolo has discovered that regulatory T cells can be used to reduce the severity of inflammation and joint disease in a mouse model of Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA). In this project, Dr. DiPaolo will determine how effective this treatment is at more advanced stages of disease. In addition he will investigate cellular targets and mechanisms used by regulatory T cells to suppress inflammation in the joints. These studies will provide novel insight into the potential to use regulatory T cells, or drugs that mimic their activity, to treat RA and potentially other autoimmune diseases.