Effector B cells are central contributors to the development of autoimmune disease by activating autoreactive T cells, producing pro-inflammatory cytokines and organizing ectopic lymphoid tissue. Conversely, IL-10-producing regulatory B (Breg) cells have pivotal roles in maintaining immunological tolerance and restraining excessive inflammation in autoinflammatory disease. Thus, regulating the equilibrium between antibody-producing effector B cells and Breg cells is critical for the treatment of autoimmune disease. In this study, we investigated the effect of human palatine tonsil-derived mesenchymal stem cells (T-MSCs) on estradiol (E2)-induced B-cell responses in vivo and in vitro. Transplantation of T-MSC into E2-treated mice alleviated B-cell-mediated immune responses and increased the population of IL-10-producing Breg cells. T-MSCs regulated the B-cell populations by producing Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-induced 3 (EBI3), one of the two subunits of IL-35 that is the well-known inducer of Breg cells. We demonstrate a critical role of EBI3 (IL-35) in vitro by depleting EBI3 in T-MSCs and by adding exogenous IL-35 to the culture system. Taken together, our data suggest that IL-35-secreting MSCs may become an attractive therapeutic to treat B-cell-mediated autoimmune diseases via expanding Breg cells.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This research was supported by the Bio & Medical Technology Development Program of the NRF funded by the Korean government (2012M3A9C6049823). In addition, this work was supported by RP-Grant 2016 of Ewha Womans University.
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- B cells
- autoimmune disease
- mesenchymal stem cells