T helper cell subpopulations repertoire in peripheral blood and its correlation with sex of newly diagnosed arthritis patients: A gender based study.


Molecular Immunology Laboratory, Interdisciplinary Biotechnology Unit, Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh 202002, India. Electronic address: [Email]


Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an inflammatory autoimmune disorder. Autoreactive T cells play a very significant role in the pathogenesis of RA. However, the exact mechanisms of disease severity and pathogenesis are poorly understood. We attempted to correlate T-helper cell activities with sexes of newly diagnosed patients with RA. The patients were divided based on their sex and disease severity. Examination of the expression of various factors using quantitative real-time PCR and FACS analysis of peripheral blood mononuclear cells revealed that T-bet, ROR-γt, Foxp3, and the level of cytokines associated with Th1 cells were almost identical among male and female patients with RA. Interestingly, there was a high correlation between Th17 expression and disease severity in female patients with RA. In general, there was no significant correlation between Th1 cell population and the disease severity in newly diagnosed patients with RA. In contrast, the frequency of both Th17 and Treg cells was higher in patients with more severe disease. The results suggested that, in patients with RA, the T-helper cell balance within peripheral blood was skewed towards the Th17 and Treg phenotypes. Besides Th17- and Treg-associated cytokines, elevated expression of IL-27/IL-23 cytokines might also be responsible for increased disease severity in female patients with RA.


Autoimmunity,Human study,Newly diagnosed patients,Pro-inflammatory cytokines,Rheumatoid arthritis,T helper cells,

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