The TLR7 agonist R848 alleviates allergic inflammation by targeting invariant NKT cells to produce IFN-gamma
Grela, Françoise × Aumeunier, Aude Bardel, Emilie Bourgeois, Elvire Vanoirbeek, Jeroen Leite-de-Moraes, Maria Schneider, Elke Dy, Michel Herbelin, André Thieblemont, Nathalie #
American Association of Immunologists
Journal of Immunology vol:186 issue:1 pages:284-290
It has been documented that TLR7 stimulation triggers not only antiviral responses, but also alleviates experimental asthma. Considering the implication of invariant NKT (iNKT) cells in both situations, we postulated that they might contribute to the anti-inflammatory effect of TLR7 ligands. We show in this study that spleen cells activated by the TLR7 agonist resiquimod (R848) attenuate allergic inflammation upon adoptive transfer when they are recovered from wild-type, but not from iNKT cell-deficient Jα18(-/-) mice, which proves the specific involvement of this regulatory population. Furthermore, we provide evidence that IFN-γ is critical for the protective effect, which is lost when transferred iNKT cells are sorted from IFN-γ-deficient mice. In support of a direct activation of iNKT cells through TLR7 signaling in vivo, we observed a prompt increase of serum IFN-γ levels, associated with upregulation of CD69 expression on iNKT cells. Moreover, we demonstrate that iNKT cells effectively express TLR7 and respond to R848 in vitro by producing high levels of IFN-γ in the presence of IL-12, consistent with the conclusion that their contribution to the alleviation of allergic inflammation upon treatment with TLR7 ligands is mediated through IFN-γ.