Immune checkpoints and the regulation of tolerogenicity in dendritic cells: Implications for autoimmunity and immunotherapy.


Millennium Institute on Immunology and Immunotherapy, Departamento de Genética Molecular y Microbiología, Facultad de Ciencias Biológicas, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago, Chile. Electronic address: [Email]


The immune system is responsible for defending the host from a large variety of potential pathogens, while simultaneously avoiding immune reactivity towards self-components. Self-tolerance has to be tightly maintained throughout several central and peripheral processes; immune checkpoints are imperative for regulating the immunity/tolerance balance. Dendritic cells (DCs) are specialized cells that capture antigens, and either activate or inhibit antigen-specific T cells. Therefore, they play a key role at inducing and maintaining immune tolerance. DCs that suppress the immune response have been called tolerogenic dendritic cells (tolDCs). Given their potential as a therapy to prevent transplant rejection and autoimmune damage, several strategies are under development to generate tolDCs, in order to avoid activation and expansion of self-reactive T cells. In this article, we summarize the current knowledge relative to the main features of tolDCs, their mechanisms of action and their therapeutic use for autoimmune diseases. Based on the literature reviewed, autologous antigen-specific tolDCs might constitute a promising strategy to suppress autoreactive T cells and reduce detrimental inflammatory processes.


Autoimmunity,Immune checkpoints,Immunotherapy,Tolerance,Tolerogenic dendritic cells,

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