Jacobo López-Abente, Marta Martínez-Bonet, Esther Bernaldo-de-Quirós, Manuela Camino, Nuria Gil, Esther Panadero, Juan Miguel Gil-Jaurena, Maribel Clemente, Simon Urschel, Lori West, Marjorie Pion and Rafael Correa-Rocha.
Sci Rep 2021 Jan 12;11(1):827.
CD25, the alpha chain of the IL-2 receptor, is expressed on activated effector T cells that mediate immune graft damage.
Induction immunosuppression is commonly used in solid organ transplantation and can include antibodies blocking CD25. However, regulatory T cells (Tregs) also rely on CD25 for their proliferation, survival, and regulatory function.
Therefore, CD25-blockade may compromise Treg protective role against rejection. We analysed in vitro the effect of basiliximab (BXM) on the viability, phenotype, proliferation and cytokine production of Treg cells.
We also evaluated in vivo the effect of BXM on Treg in thymectomized heart transplant children receiving BXM in comparison to patients not receiving induction therapy.
Our results show that BXM reduces Treg counts and function in vitro by affecting their proliferation, Foxp3 expression, and IL-10 secretion capacity.
In pediatric heart-transplant patients, we observed decreased Treg counts and a diminished Treg/Teff ratio in BXM-treated patients up to 6-month after treatment, recovering baseline values at the end of the 12-month follow up period.
These results reveal that the use of BXM could produce detrimental effects on Tregs, and support the evidence suggesting that BXM induction could impair the protective role of Tregs in the period of highest incidence of acute graft rejection.