The regulatory role of thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP) in maternal-fetal immune tolerance during early human pregnancy.J Reprod Immunol. 2009 Dec; 83(1-2):106-8.JR
Thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP) is an IL-7-like cytokine, and the functional TSLP receptor (TSLPR) consists of a common IL-7 receptor alpha chain (IL-7Ralpha) and TSLP-specific gamma receptor chain (TSLPR-gamma). It has been demonstrated that TSLP plays an important role in the Th2 bias and regulatory T cell expansion of immune response and tolerance. A successful pregnancy, especially in the early phase, demonstrates features of a Th2 immune response and requires CD4(+)Foxp3(+) regulatory T cell expansion. We have found recently that TSLP-instructed decidual dendritic cells (dDCs) promote decidual CD4(+) T cells to produce Th2-type cytokines including IL-10, which is believed to be a key player in maternal-fetal tolerance. Phenotypic analyses have shown that the expanded cells are mainly CD4(+) Th2 cells and Foxp3(+) regulatory T cells. Our findings show that trophoblasts secrete TSLP that is able to instruct the dDCs to induce CD4(+) Th2 cell and Foxp3(+) regulatory T cell differentiation in decidual CD4(+) T cells.