[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: TGF-beta plays an important role in the induction of Treg and maintenance of immunologic tolerance, but whether other members of TGF-beta superfamily act together or independently to achieve this effect is poorly understood. Although others have reported that the bone morphogenetic proteins (BMP) and TGF-beta have similar effects on the development of thymocytes and T cells, in this study, we report that members of the BMP family, BMP-2 and -4, are unable to induce non-regulatory T cells to become Foxp3+ Treg. Neutralization studies with Noggin have revealed that BMP-2/4 and the BMP receptor signaling pathway is not required for TGF-beta to induce naïve CD4+CD25- cells to express Foxp3; however, BMP-2/4 and TGF-beta have a synergistic effect on the induction of Foxp3+ Treg. BMP-2/4 affects non-Smad signaling molecules including phosphorylated ERK and JNK, which could subsequently promote the differentiation of Foxp3+ Treg induced by TGF-beta. Data further advocate that TGF-beta is a key signaling factor for Foxp3+ Treg development. In addition, the synergistic effect of BMP-2/4 and TGF-beta indicates that the simultaneous manipulation of TGF-beta and BMP signaling might have considerable effects in the clinical setting for the enhancement of Treg purity and yield.
European Journal of Immunology 11/2009; 40(1):142-52. · 4.97 Impact Factor