Abstract Title:

Dietary gluten alters the balance of proinflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines in T cells of BALB/c mice.

Abstract Source:

Immunology. 2012 Aug 22. Epub 2012 Aug 22. PMID: 22913724

Abstract Author(s):

Julie C Antvorskov, Petra Fundova, Karsten Buschard, David P Funda

Article Affiliation:

The Bartholin Institute, Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen, Denmark.


Several studies have documented that dietary modifications influence the development of type 1 diabetes (T1D). However, little is known about the interplay of dietary components and the penetration of diabetes incidence. In this study we tested if wheat gluten is able to induce differences in the cytokine pattern of Foxp3(+) regulatory T cells, as well as Foxp3(-) T cells, isolated from intestinal mucosal lymphoid tissue and non-mucosal lymphoid compartments in BALB/c mice. The gluten-containing standard (STD) diet markedly changed the cytokine expression within Foxp3(-) T cells, in all lymphoid organs tested, towards a higher expression of proinflammatory IFNγ, IL-17 and IL-2. In Foxp3(+) Tregs, gluten ingestion resulted in a mucosal increase in IL-17 and IL-2 and an overall increase in IFNγ and IL-4. The gluten free (GF) diet induced an anti-inflammatory cytokine profile with higher proportion of TGFβ(+) Foxp3(-) T cells in all tested lymphoid tissues and higher IL-10 expression within non-T-cells in spleen, and a tendency towards a mucosal increase in TGFβ(+) Foxp3(+) Tregs. Our data shows that the gluten-containing STD diet modifies the cytokine pattern of both Foxp3(-) T cells and Foxp3(+) Tregs towards a more inflammatory cytokine profile. This immune profile may contribute to the higher T1D incidence associated with gluten intake. © 2012 The Authors. Immunology © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Study Type : Animal Study

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