Regulation of IL-17A production is distinct from IL-17F in a primary human cell co-culture model of T cell-mediated B cell activation.

Authors: Melton AC, Melrose J, Alajoki L, Privat S, Cho H, Brown N, Plavec AM, Nguyen D, Johnston ED, Yang J, Polokoff MA, Plavec I, Berg EL, O’Mahony A.
Publisher/Year: PLOS ONE. 2013;8(3):e58966.
Pub Med ID/Journal ID: PMID: 23505568


Improper regulation of B cell responses leads to excessive production of antibodies and contributes to the development of autoimmune disease. T helper 17 (Th17) cells also drive the development of autoimmune disease, but the role of B cells in shaping Th17 cell-mediated immune responses, as well as the reciprocal regulation of B cell responses by IL-17 family cytokines, remains unclear. The aim of this study was to characterize the regulation of IL-17A and IL-17F in a model of T cell-dependent B cell activation. Stimulation of primary human B cell and peripheral blood mononuclear cell (BT) co-cultures with α-IgM and a non-mitogenic concentration of superantigens for three days promoted a Th17 cell response as evidenced by increased expression of Th17-related gene transcripts, including Il17fIl21Il22, and Il23r, in CD4 T cells, as well as the secretion of IL-17A and IL-17F protein. We tested the ability of 144 pharmacologic modulators representing 91 different targets or pathways to regulate IL-17A and IL-17F production in these stimulated BT co-cultures. IL-17A production was found to be preferentially sensitive to inhibition of the PI3K/mTOR pathway, while prostaglandin EP receptor agonists, including PGE2, increased IL-17A concentrations. In contrast, the production of IL-17F was inhibited by PGE2, but selectively increased by TLR2 and TLR5 agonists. These results indicate that IL-17A regulation is distinct from IL-17F in stimulated BT co-cultures and that this co-culture approach can be used to identify pathway mechanisms and novel agents that selectively inhibit production of IL-17A or IL-17F.