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T cell apoptosis by tryptophan catabolism

T cell apoptosis by tryptophan catabolism Indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase (IDO) is a tryptophan-catabolizing enzyme that, expressed by different cell types, has regulatory effects on T cells resulting from tryptophan depletion in specific local tissue microenvironments. Different mechanisms, however, might contribute to IDO-dependent immune regulation. We show here that tryptophan metabolites in the kynurenine pathway, such as 3-hydroxyanthranilic and quinolinic acids, will induce the selective apoptosis in vitro of murine thymocytes and of Th1 but not Th2 cells. T cell apoptosis was observed at relatively low concentrations of kynurenines, did not require Fas/Fas ligand interactions, and was associated with the activation of caspase-8 and the release of cytochrome c from mitochondria. When administered in vivo, the two kynurenines caused depletion of specific thymocyte subsets in a fashion qualitatively similar to dexamethasone. These data suggest that the selective deletion of T lymphocytes may be a major mechanism whereby tryptophan metabolism affects immunity under physiopathologic conditions. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Cell Death & Differentiation Springer Journals

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References (54)

Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2002 by Macmillan Publishers Limited
Subject
Life Sciences; Life Sciences, general; Biochemistry, general; Cell Biology; Stem Cells; Apoptosis; Cell Cycle Analysis
ISSN
1350-9047
eISSN
1476-5403
DOI
10.1038/sj.cdd.4401073
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase (IDO) is a tryptophan-catabolizing enzyme that, expressed by different cell types, has regulatory effects on T cells resulting from tryptophan depletion in specific local tissue microenvironments. Different mechanisms, however, might contribute to IDO-dependent immune regulation. We show here that tryptophan metabolites in the kynurenine pathway, such as 3-hydroxyanthranilic and quinolinic acids, will induce the selective apoptosis in vitro of murine thymocytes and of Th1 but not Th2 cells. T cell apoptosis was observed at relatively low concentrations of kynurenines, did not require Fas/Fas ligand interactions, and was associated with the activation of caspase-8 and the release of cytochrome c from mitochondria. When administered in vivo, the two kynurenines caused depletion of specific thymocyte subsets in a fashion qualitatively similar to dexamethasone. These data suggest that the selective deletion of T lymphocytes may be a major mechanism whereby tryptophan metabolism affects immunity under physiopathologic conditions.

Journal

Cell Death & DifferentiationSpringer Journals

Published: Oct 1, 2002

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